History

Story Of The Station

2020 is the 30 year anniversary of The Arts Station but the building originally dates back to 1908 as the community train station. The Fernie & District Arts Council is embarking on a project to research, collect and record the Story of the Station from its original life 1908 to present day. We want to hear all and any stories of the building to capture this history and ensure it legacy. The result will be a digital permanent exhibit at The Arts Station. This project is funded in part by the Columbia Basin Trust and Heritage BC through the Built Heritage Grants. Special thanks to our sponsor Park Place Lodge for support of this project.

Grand Opening of the Arts Station

1990

First Gallery Show by Troy Bubba Cook

January 1991

Valdy Regular Performer at the Arts Station

Train car moves into place next to The Arts Station

1994

The Griz Grin; Still relevant today!

Early Days in the Pottery Studio

The original Fernie Arts Station in Blue!

Cathy Smith-Clark of the Fernie Spinners and Weavers Guild

Mary Menduk of the Visual Arts Guild

Taste of Fernie

Fernie Community Choir

Fun in Station Square

Fernie Quilters Guild

A Gallery Opening

Flowers on the Deck

Arts and Letters with the vintage fire truck leading walk to the library

Spirit festival; the day confetti was banned from The Arts Station

Wednesday Socials

Banner Project

2012

Lantern Festival

2014

A Christmas Carol with Lindsay Vallance

2015

Gallery Show by Vanessa Croome

A Snowy Arts Station by Vince Mo

Dumpster Project People's Choice Winner Brina Schenk

2018

Sugarplum Festival

Festival of Lights

Wednesday Socials

Youth Art Club in the Gallery with Troy Bubba Cook's latest show

2019

Arts Station Staff Louise Ferguson and Jackie Graham in front of "All Kinds of Beauty" Mural

#ferniemuralproject

The Arts Station Early Hours by Colin Ferguson

2020

Our History

The Arts Station became more than a dream for a handful of art enthusiasts when Canadian Pacific Railway donated land and the old CPR building to the City of Fernie for use as a community arts centre.

The CPR Station was built in 1908 after Fernie’s second fire. It is known to be the last surviving first-class CPR station of this design, as this construction was built especially for the Crowsnest Branch Line.

In 1986, the Fernie & District Arts Council began the renovation and restoration of this remarkable piece of history. A new foundation was laid and the building moved to its new location a few metres from its original home. Most fixtures in The Arts Station are restored originals, while some are replicas.

In October 1990, after four years of hard work by many volunteers, The Station held its grand opening. The Fernie & District Arts Council now operates with more than 20 volunteers who put in hundreds of hours each month to provide many of the services available to members and visitors.

The magnificent scenery of Fernie invites travellers to pause a while and admire the Rocky Mountains surrounding this charming town. Rich in history and heritage, the once sleepy coal mining town is quickly becoming an outdoor enthusiast playground.

 When the skis and snowboards, golf clubs and fly fishing rods are packed away for the day, visitors can stroll through Fernie’s historic downtown to discover its carefully-preserved heritage buildings which carry a wealth of local history.

One outstanding heritage building is the Canadian Pacific Railway Station, dating back to 1908, after Fernie’s second fire. When railways ruled the world of transportation and communication, it was the centre of intense activity. One can imagine passengers in transit stepping out and strolling along the platform to breathe deeply of the mountain air while contemplating the awesome ring of peaks.

Today the station is still a busy place. Moved a few metres from its original site, renovated, repainted and refurbished, it is now The Arts Station, home of the Fernie & District Arts Council. The original lobby is a gallery for the display of works by local artists; the ticket office is a restaurant; the baggage room is a 100-seat theatre used by visiting and local performers. Quilters, painters, stitchers and weavers use the upper floor while photographers and pottery enthusiasts practice their crafts in the basement studios.

It is still possible for visitors to stroll along the platform, admire the peaks and sense the pulse of the new activities. A visit to The Arts Station is a rewarding experience – welcome.