things to do in the east kootenay

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Planning a vacation? Moving to the East Kootenay? This book will give you great ideas on things to do


  • Things To DoThings To Do in the East Kootenay 2011in the East Kootenay 2011


    Cranbrook Next to Wal-Mart 250-426-2338

    HOURS9 am - 11 pm

    7 days a week

    Fernie Next to Best Western250-423-6522Drink Responsibly

    Ice,Beer,Wine, Spirits,Glasses, Coolers,

    Liqueurs,Munchies,Bottle Openers,Specialty Items

    P a r t yP a r t y

  • What's in this guideWhat's in this guideOur CommunitiesOur CommunitiesCanal Flats Cranbrook Creston Elkford Fernie Golden Invermere Kimberley Radium Hot Springs Sparwood

    Pages 4 to 6

    Festivals & EventsFestivals & EventsColumbia Valley Events Festivals in Kimberley Cranbrook Celebrations Elk Valley Events Festivals in the Creston Valley

    Pages 7 to 11

    Heritage & CultureHeritage & CultureFirst Nations Culture Mining Heritage Riding the Rails Historic Museums Historic Places Fort Steele Heritage Town Artisans Music & The Arts

    Pages 12 to 19

    Food & DrinkFood & DrinkFarmers Markets European Dining Something Is Brewing Wine & Cheese

    Pages 20 to 21

    Outdoor & RecreationOutdoor & RecreationLakes & Waterways Hot Springs For Animal Lovers Forests & Gardens Getting Active

    Pages 22 to 26

    Sports & CompetitionSports & CompetitionRun Your Heart Out More Action Going To The Dogs Spectator Sports

    Pages 27 to 29

    Children & YouthChildren & YouthKootenay Childrens Festival Adventures For Youth Blue Lake Education

    Page 30

    Y O U R G U I D E T O T H E E A S T K O O T E N A Y 2 0 1 1 3

    Distributed to every home and business in the East Kootenay plus select Tourist Information

    Centres throughout B.C.1510 - 2nd St N, Cranbrook, BC V1C 3L2

    Telephone (250)489-3455 Fax (250)489-3743Toll Free 1-800-665-2382

    advertising@kootenayadvertiser.comeditorial comments to:

    For a full line up of British Columbia tourism guides,

    check www.getawaybc.comPUBLISHER/SALES MANAGER: Darcy Wiebe

    PRODUCTION : Bridget FixEDITOR: Kerstin Renner

    Published by

    "Nutter's; looking after you from the inside out."

    Vitamins Supplements Nuts Sugarfree & Celiac ProductsStore Hours: Mon. - Sat. 9:30 - 5:30

    1107 Baker Street, Cranbrook, BC 426-5519Toll Free 1-888-426-5519





    Cover photo of the Hoodoos by

    Fairmont is taken by

    Dietrich Renner

    Thanks to all photo


    Welcome to the East KootenayWelcome to the East KootenayWhether you are a fi rst-time visitor or a

    long-time resident of the East Kootenay, there are plenty of things to discover. Some things are hard to miss, such as the magnif-icence of the mountains and the tranquil-ity of the remote wilderness areas. Others are more hidden. Have you been to Kim-berleys Underground Mining Railway or Ninas Hillside Garden restaurant? What about visiting the goats in Yahk or Koote-nay Alpine Cheese Co. in Creston?

    It seems we sometimes forget there are just as many adventures to be had in our own backyard as when we jet off on vaca-tion to an exotic destination. Only when people come to visit, do we stop to take a closer look at the things to do in our region. Every community has a story, so get out and explore them all. Get to know your neigh-bours or new friends, playing a round of golf at one of the many world-class courses or huddled around that secret fi shing hole.

  • City of CranbrookCity of CranbrookWith its motto - Mountains of Opportunity - the City of

    Cranbrook shows the spirit of its community and of its residents who will seek the moment to help it prosper. Cranbrook has its roots in railway history. It came into existence with the arrival of the Crowsnest Railway in 1898. Cranbrook was incorporated in 1905 and in 2005 the community celebrated its centennial. Today, Cranbrook has evolved into the service hub for the East Kootenay region, with a population of around 20,000 people. The history is, however, still very much alive. A walk through the city - especially the Baker Hill Heritage Residential Area - will reveal the hidden gems. Cranbrook Heritage Walking Tour maps are available free of charge at the Chamber of Commerce tourist info kiosks and the Canadian Museum of Rail Travel. These maps identify the various points of interest, including the grand house that the Canadian Pacific Railway built for its regional superintendents in 1900. More information is available at

    Town of CrestonTown of CrestonWith the delicate combination of low elevation, lake effect

    humidity and ideal sun exposure matched with the hard work of its farmers, the Creston Valley has managed to remain one of British Columbias only three commercial farming areas. Its a fact the local producers are very proud of and that is reflected in their work. Every year, many Kootenay residents celebrate this gem by making a special trip to one of Ericksons many produce stands for

    There are numerous communities, from the smallest hamlet to the big centres, that make up the unique fabric of the East Kootenay region. The only way to find out about the hidden gems and their special attractions is to visit each one of them and spend some time to explore. To give you an overview, here is a look at the main municipalities in the East Kootenay.

    Village of Canal FlatsVillage of Canal FlatsCanal Flats is the newest municipality in the East Kootenay. The

    inaugural meeting of the newly incorporated Village of Canal Flats was held on June 29, 2004. Before that the area was under the jurisdiction of the Regional District. Although aboriginal people and later explorers, trappers and gold-seekers had previously traveled through the area, Canal Flats did not start developing as a permanent community until 1929 when workers came to the area to cut ties for the Canadian Pacific Railway. For many years it functioned as a loosely-defined but vibrant community with employment focused on logging and lumber mill operations. Ranching, hunting and fishing in the adjacent mountains and valleys provided the community with options for employment and recreation. Canal Days is an annual event that celebrates the communitys history. Held in June, Canal Days has a talent show, a special bingo, parades, tournaments and a family dance at the community hall. The Canal Flats Citizen of the Year is also named during Canal Days. Get more information about the community at

    4 Y O U R G U I D E T O T H E E A S T K O O T E N AY 2 0 1 1

    7DNHDJLDQWOHDSEDFNLQWRWKHVDQGH[SHULHQFHWKHUHVWRUHGSLRQHHUERRPWRZQRI)RUW6WHHOH$IDPLO\IDYRULWHIRUGHFDGHV)RUW6WHHOHLVDPXVW2SHQGDLO\& | 250.417.6000 | recorded info line 250.426.7352 | 9851 Hwy 93/95, Fort Steele, BC, VOB 1N0 (located just 16km northeast of Cranbrook)



    Our CommunitiesOur Communities

  • Y O U R G U I D E T O T H E E A S T K O O T E N AY 2 0 1 1 5

    fresh apples, pears, cherries, plums and peaches. Fresh local fruit is available as early as June for berries right up to late September for apples and pears and you can even hand-pick the familys pumpkin for Halloween. Creston also has several festivals celebrating all the great gifts Mother Nature has to offer. Spectacular mountain views, surrounding expanses of wilderness and the beauty of Kootenay Lake all combine to make Creston an excellent base for outdoor adventure, and a popular destination for visitors. Outdoor enthusi-asts will enjoy Crestons scenic hiking, biking and naturalist trails. Exciting changes are currently happening in Creston. The town is in the process of a five-year downtown revitalization project that will make the town core more attractive and pedestrian-friendly. A new Community Complex, including an indoor aquatic facility has just been completed. Creston is also a tour stop on the International Selkirk Loop, a route encircling the breathtaking Selkirk Mountains in Northeast Washington, North Idaho and Southeast British Columbia. See for more information.

    District of ElkfordDistrict of ElkfordThe just under 3,000 residents of the District of Elkford are proud

    to say their community is Wild at Heart. Situated in the Rocky Mountains at the highest elevation for a community in Canada (1,300 metres), the picturesque community owes its existence to the discovery of coal. The Height of the Rockies Wilderness Area to the north of Elkford is a new, undeveloped site. One of its key char-acteristics is its variation of elevation, from 1,310 to 3,474 metres. Its a great place for hiking and horseback riding, but should be attempted by experienced hikers and mountaineers only. See for more information.

    City of FernieCity of FernieThe City of Fernie is based on a history of survival. It is named

    after William Fernie who, alongside Colonel James Baker, was the driving force behind the coal mines. Enthusiastic residents pioneered the second big business in Fernie and opened the ski hill at its present site in January 1963. Fernies bid for the 1968 Winter Olympics helped lay the foundation for the Fernie Alpine Resort. Today, photographers regularly descend upon Fernie after a major snowfall to take those great magazine cover shots and more and more people realize every year that Fernie is a must-ski on British Columbias powder circuit. The hundreds of miles of beautiful rid-ing terrain for mountain bikers, incred