Youth-full Achievements in Vernon, British Columbia
Youth Make it Happen in Vernon, British Columbia
Every city that adopts and adapts the Chemainus model of tourism development has its unique approach. Circumstances are different, the lead players are different. Many use youth to assist one way or another. But nowhere has youth played such a major role as it has in Vernon BC.
Under the direction of Lead Muralist Michelle Loughery almost 30 murals have appeared downtown over five years, many funded by Human Resources Canada and the city of Vernon, all based from the Railroad station - past which trains still run whilst a mural also tells the tale!
The outcome for the Downtown Vernon Association is magnificent, not only because of the quality of the work but because the compactness of the town centre means it makes a greater impact than is sometimes achieved elsewhere.
The full story was shared with Prestoungrange and Lady Avril as they made a post-Ely Conference stopover in this Okanagan lakeside city, a region famed for its apple orchards and more recently its vineyards. They are pictured here with Terry Jones, Executive Director for the Downtown Vernon Association [right] and Michelle Loughery [second from right].
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One particularly important work, which addressed and overcame a badly vandalised area, depicts the apocraphal serpent of the lake, Ogopogo, and has illuminated windows and a skateboard area artistically presented too.
A selection of some other murals visited is given below, with special attention to be drawn to the use of a permanent poppy field in association with the war memorial and other murals commemorating wartime valour, and a trompe l'oeil for the apple orchard.
Word has it that Vernon will be making a bid to host the 2010 Global Conference. If they do and are successful, it will certainly be a most exciting venue.
Murals connect communities
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Published Date: August 31st 2004