Fernie's Tapestry

Last month was my one year anniversary column, so I turned to my editor for a little guidance. I could write about the spectacular Canada Day Celebration on Friday 1 at Prentice Park - last year’s event was unanimously voted ‘best ever’ by Fernie’s locals or perhaps I could write about the Furious3, a new staged mountain bike race for Fernie held over Canada Day Weekend.

Or I could talk about the Fernie Writers’ Conference, a celebration of writing with a series of readings, discussions and presentations for the public. This year the Conference opens with two special free receptions; notable writers will give readings in the Heritage Library Garden on Sunday 16 from 6:30pm and Marina Endicott will read from her new novel The Little Shadows at 7pm on Monday 19 at Polar Peek Books. The festival ‘proper’ begins on Thursday 21 and continues through the weekend with poetry readings at the beautiful ‘I Dew’ point at Island Lake Lodge, songwriting performances at the Northern Hotel, readings from many of the week’s students and instructors and a keynote address on Friday 22 from Fred Wah and Tom Wayman. On Saturday 23, CBC’s North by Northwest hosted by Sheryl MacKay will be broadcasting live from the Fernie Heritage Library. For full details and timings please visit the website at www.ferniewriters.com.

Or maybe I could mention the Yard Sale in aid of the Angel Garden. This wonderful cause has been set up in order to create a peaceful, inspirational place of remembrance at the Eco Garden. The yard sale will be held on Saturday 9 from 8am-12 noon next to Loaf Bakery. To donate goods for sale, please drop off small items at the Wildsight office on 2nd Ave or take larger items to Loaf Bakery on Friday 8 between 5-7pm or call Dee on 250-423-3637 for more information.

So many wonderful events to choose from – it brought to mind Rosanna Anselmo’s song about how Fernie is woven together by the lives and passions of our residents and visitors:

Shades of all cultures woven in the fabric core,
All of them sharing in their own folklore
So all heed, celebrate, breathe in this life breath deep
And let the spirit of our people within you always keep

Look around, look around you, look around you ‘cause you see
You are just one - one of the many, you've helped form -
Form this tapestry, Yes Fernie's own Tapestry.

So what was it to be?
Golf.
That’s what she said. Golf. As Mark Twain once famously said, “Golf is a good walk spoiled.” Was he right? And even if he wasn’t, what do I know about golf anyway? I do know we have one of the most beautiful courses I’ve ever seen (including those in my Scottish homeland) but I have no idea what all those clubs are for or what a birdie is or even why those pencils are so tiny… it was time to find out the answers to all of these questions.

July is home to one of the Fernie Golf and Country Club’s biggest events - the Club Championship on July 9-10. If you play, likely you’ll know more about that tournament than I do. But what if you don’t already play and would like to? To find out what my options were, I called my friend Chris Stockey who is president of the Ladies Golf Executive. Tuesdays are ladies day at FGCC; every week at 9am and 3pm ladies gather and then split into fours to play a friendly round of nine or 18 holes.

To the newbie it might sound a little intimidating, but I couldn’t have felt more welcome. I was given the FGCC 101- Alice, the rules chair, is a font of information, while Chris pointed out course markers and other info for me, and Ursula, who also works as a greens-keeper, told me all about the course. Did you know the pin flags are colour coded? Me neither. Everyone is welcome, and it’s a great way to meet people to play with plus a sociable way to learn course etiquette. And let’s face it, how else are you going to know what to do with that #3 club?

Every week there’s a different event – this particular week was puttless - to keep it interesting and each week there’s prizes for the winner plus door prizes, additional ‘skins’ games and an optional team play event. It’s open attendance so it doesn’t matter if you miss a few dates and you don’t need to book or plan far ahead. There’s a small attendance fee to cover the admin, and you can enjoy lunch or dinner in the Clubhouse after your round.

I’d like to thank Chris, Alice and Ursula and all the ladies for a lovely evening and the inspiration to start a new activity. Please contact the pro shop at FGCC for more information.