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Celebrating 40 years of the counter culture movement in the West Kootenay

The Vallican Whole Community Centre.

The epicentre of the counterculture movement in the West Kootenays is celebrating its 40th birthday with a three-day party this weekend.

Several of the Slocan Valley's most outstanding artists — including Pamela Nagley Stevenson, Ann Swanson Gross, and Kuris Raits — are offering up some of their finest works in a 50/50 auction Saturday evening as the Vallican Whole Community Centre celebrates its 40th birthday.

Also on offer are a sailing trip on Slocan Lake and an elegant, chef-prepared meal in your home.  Auctioneer Corky Evans' oratorical skills are well known: everyone knows he can be counted on to get a crowd going.

Friday night is the very last Cafe Voltaire, a genuine "coffee house" featuring several performers, including poet Tom Wayman and jazz stylist Laura Landsberg, as well as emerging spoken word artist Geordie Campos, who has been creating quite a stir with his eloquent and pithy commentaries on contemporary experience.

Saturday will showcase the Valley's award-winning Kootenay sand sculptors, as well as an Old Tyme Band Stand all day long - an eclectic mix of music put together by the new generation including No Gold from Vancouver, Magic Arrows, and Olin McKay and Terry B. Moore.

The day will then will segue into the Locavores' Feast (100 Mile Potluck), the live auction, and wind up with a rock 'n' roll extravaganza: Boogie your buns off with Brain Child.

Throughout the weekend, attendees will have the opportunity to "Take home a piece of the Valley" with an artist-run arts and crafts market displaying an array of the Slocan Valley's creative endeavours.

Also ongoing will be Marcia Braundy's DVD, Building the Building, Building

Community. Elsewhere on the grounds and in the building you will find various workshops, including massage with Christine Sutherland; participatory art with Evelyn Kirkaldy (come help paint a van); and a Memory Wall, where people are asked to bring memorabilia from the entire 40-year period.

Free time can be spent wandering the grounds and exploring the paths through the forest, a chance to discover the beginnings of the Whole's latest ambitious project, the Sculpture Park.

Sunday will be a family day, with kids' activities, a kids' concert with Bing Jensen, a giant birthday cake, and a windup concert with two Russian women vocalists, Toinya Marie Sammartino and Netta Florette Zeberoff, whose thrilling harmonies will break your heart.

Admission to most of the event is by donation. Weekend passes and Brain Child tickets are available from www.vallicanwhole.com, the place to go for more information about the weekend.

Tickets are also available at Jennie's in Winlaw and Eddi Music in Nelson. A $50 donation will get you a weekend pass — admission to everything, as well as a limited edition medallion by Max the Jeweller, based on the original poster design by Bob

Inwood.