Nelson Leafs defenceman Ethan Land skates away after the team’s season ended in dramatic fashion on March 23 at NDCC. Photo: Tyler Harper

COLUMN: A different kind of discovery tour

Escaping the cold at three downtown events

April Fool’s Day was Easter Sunday.

Or should it have been Easter Sunday was April Fool’s?

And that’s maybe why Easter Monday felt like a Snow Day, even though the kids were already scheduled off from school.

Either way, it’s been quite the test of faith and patience for those of us waiting for spring.

Not surprisingly, it was a crazy end to an excellent season for the crowds up at Whitewater Ski Resort on Monday, the last day of operations at the resort.

“Please write an article about the crazy events up at Whitewater,” wrote Helen Foulger. “The longest line ever of cars. To us skiers this is an historic event.”

Message received, Helen. History has been made.

And now with the traffic jam ending and the local hill closed, even the skiers want the temperature to climb.

While there’s precipitation in the forecast later this week, at least the mercury is expected to rise to double digits.

Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to warm your heart on a cool night in this town.

I took in the Savoy Hotel’s grand opening bash on March 22.

More than 1,000 people — 10 per cent of Nelson’s population — dropped by the boutique inn on west Baker during the all-day complimentary party. The historic hotel, first opened in 1914, has been transformed from a derelict building into a stunning establishment in just five years.

A beaming Mayor Deb Kozak announced “you have breathed new life into this building” as she cut the ribbon in the downstairs club.

I didn’t stay long, but it’s clear the positive vibe from this event will linger for months.

The following night, at the east end of Baker Street, there was another big crowd out for some entertaiment of the sporting variety.

My wife and I joined the 900-plus fans attending Game 6 of the KIJHL conference final between the Nelson Leafs and the Kimberley Dynamiters. The Leafs lost 2-1 in double overtime, but it was a truly memorable night.

I heard a young man say to his pal as they walked away from the arena, “Wouldn’t it be cool if the crowds at Leafs games were always like that?”

Yes, indeed, that would be cool. And when you consider the price of admission is only $10, there’s no reason they can’t be. Wait till next year.

The third installment of this protracted tour came Thursday, as I ended up at the Hume Hotel for the Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards.

To me, it seemed casual and comfortable with just as many sweaters as suits in the crowd.

Selkirk College’s Bob Hall walked up and confirmed my observations.

“I came here feeling apprehensive, but now I’m excited,” said Hall, shortly before he was confirmed as one of three new chamber board members.

Hall, who was editor of the now-defunct Nelson Daily News in the 1990s, said the Nelson Chamber of Commerce wasn’t always a comfortable place for both sides of the political spectrum.

“It’s a good mix now,” he said.

And the expanded agenda of this year’s awards, managed by amiable executive director Tom Thomson, ensured there was a casual Kootenay feel.

There were several highlights, but perhaps witnessing Timberland Consultants co-owner Trevor Anderson sporting a toque as he accepted the Professional Service Excellence Award might have been the coolest.

The chamber added four new categories this year, including one for Non-Profit/Community Service Excellence.

The award went to Nelson CARES, whose executive director Jenny Robinson expressed thanks and finished with “We live in amazing place. Let’s keep it healthy for everyone.”

Words that perhaps you wouldn’t expect to hear at a business awards function.

Just Posted

RDCK moves ahead with Castlegar rec complex upgrade plan

Board approves grant application for $13 million from provincial, federal governments

Cottonwood Lake preservation group surpasses $50,000 fundraising goal

In 28 days, 393 donors have contributed to the fund

Last of southern Selkirk caribou relocated to Revelstoke area

One cow from the South Selkirk herd and two from the Purcells were moved this week

Scammers using Castlegar home for rental fraud

Local realtors say the problem is happening more frequently with their properties

West Kootenay radio club says local network in need of upgrades

Club president Lane Wilson estimated $100,000 of work required

B.C. opioid crisis to get same world-renowned treatment approach as HIV/AIDS

A program that focuses on treatment as prevention will roll out Jan. 17

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Vancouver Island photographer makes National Geographic’s 2018 elite

Rare double honour for Marston from the 36 best Your Shots out of nearly 19,000 photos

Ex-Liberal candidate in Burnaby, B.C., says volunteer wrote controversial post

Karen Wang dropped out following online post singling out NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh’s ethnicity

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Canada’s arrest of Huawei exec an act of ‘backstabbing,’ Chinese ambassador says

China has called Canada’s arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou ‘politically motivated’

In limbo: Leftover embryos challenge clinics, couples

Some are outright abandoned by people who quit paying storage fees and other couples struggle with tough decisions

BREAKING: Jury finds man accused of killing B.C. girl, 12, guilty

Twelve-year-old Monica Jack disappeared in May 1978 while riding her bike along a highway in Merritt, B.C.

Most Read