What Makes an Artist Tick?

Join us October 15th for a film screening and Q&A with Nancy Rosenblum and local artists!
$10 Suggested donation at the door, all welcome.


Please Save the Date!

The Board of RARTS/ The Vallican Whole Community Centre would like to invite you to our 2022 Annual General Meeting.

Sunday, September 18th, at the Vallican Whole.

3pm: Presentation and conversation about Firesmart strategies at the Whole & in our community, including a conversation about possible firesmart building renovations.  The RARTS BOD is exploring replacing our current cedar shake shingles with fire-resistant Hardy Board.
Our RDCK Wildfire Mitigation Specialist will be on-site for the conversation.

4pm: AGM Business & BOD election.  We are bidding fond farewell to at least two board members this fall – please help us find equally wonderful replacements!

Post-AGM business, our BOD Chair Andria Green will treat attendees to a local homemade dinner at the Whole.

Please feel free to share this invitation with friends & neighbours!


If you are not a current member of the Rural Alternatives Research & Training Society, or you need to renew your membership, CLICK HERE!

Firesmart Community Day

Public Memorial for Penny Tees

Penny Katherine Tees (February 17 1952- June 28th 2021)

A public Memorial will be held June 28th, 3pm at the Vallican Whole Community Centre.

Penny Katherine Tees was born February 17th 1952 to Pat and John (Jack) Tees. The second child in the family, Penny grew up with her parents and her sister Shelly in Oakland, CA. The family spent many weekends at beaches from Shelter Cove Beach near San Francisco to Monterey where her father would participate in skin diving meets. Penny had a life-long love of the ocean and of watching wildlife. The family took long camping trips and twice visited British Columbia and the Kootenays where Penny would later spend over half her life.

Penny won a full scholarship to UC Berkeley in the early 1970s. She studied anthropology and was active at protests against the Vietnam war and rallies for better environmental policies and civil rights. Penny worked at Griffin Nursery School in Berkeley and took Elinor Griffin’s philosophies on early-childhood education with her as a parent, Trustee, Early Childhood Coordinator, and Grandparent.

Penny’s sister immigrated to Canada and landed in the Slocan Valley; Penny’s parents followed, and in 1980 Penny moved to Winlaw and soon married Larry Avis. The couple built and ran a fruit stand, which eventually became the building the Whole School operates out of. In 1985 they separated and Penny gave birth to their daughter, Martina.

Penny was elected to the local School Board in 1990 and took her position of Trustee and eventually chair very seriously. She was a fearless advocate for public education. Penny became the President of the BC School Trustees Association in 2004 and held this position for four years. During her time in these roles, she advocated for rural schools and accessibility in public education.

Penny was a devoted daughter, taking care of both her parents until their deaths. She raised her daughter Martina with infinite care and love and became a proud and doting grandma with the births of Esther and Lewis Ash.

Penny’s dear friend, Sam Simpson has called Penny “the most frugal person [she has] ever known.” Penny did not believe in excess, consumerism, or aesthetic renovations. She loved dogs, wild animals, the beach, trivia games —she won the last one she ever played—and children. Penny was passionate about welcoming young families to the Valley and delighted in seeing all the babies and children at Networks for New Parents, a program she designed and ran for years. Penny will be deeply missed by the community, her friends near and far, her past colleagues, and, of course her family. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Senior’s Housing in the Slocan Valley. We miss you, Penny.

The Way They Came

A One-Woman Show

Playing at the Vallican Whole on FRIDAY, APRIL 15th.

Doors at 7PM, Show at 7:30.

Written and Performed by Ellie Reynolds

Midwifed by Bessie Wapp

Ellie is in her prime. She has an unusual but loving marriage and two beautiful small children, both born at home. Now they are out of diapers she is inching her way to more independence. That is, until an ill-fated IUD, a scheming Uterus, and an unreliable Placenta, join forces to knock Ellie off her birth-goddess high horse and force her to contend with an un-planned third child. Through an unbidden series of events, Ellie must summon her inner Sacred Mother, contend with the voice of her own Contempt, and find the answers to her burning questions – what if you trust your body and it lets you down? Does the way we are born really matter?‘The Way They Came’ takes a brutally honest and unflinching look at childbirth, from the ecstatic to the surgical; the stories we tell about how we all got here; and the blurred boundaries that separate birth, death, sex, and the precious condition of life. The show is dedicated to all who were ever born, including you.

TICKETS: Will be available at the Door, and can be reserved by emailing [email protected]

Artist Residency Program!

We are excited to announce the launch of the Vallican Whole Artist Residency Program, a partnership with the Slocan Valley Community Arts Council. Applications open in January 2022. Learn more about it here.

50th Anniversary T-Shirts

To celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Vallican Whole, local artist and friend-of-RARTS Bob Inwood has updated his iconic Vallican Whole image to be printed onto 100% cotton t-shirts.

We are selling these shirts for $50 each, as a fundraiser for the Vallican Whole going into our second half-century. Your purchase also gets you a year’s membership in RARTS! Click the image below to read more and order your own shirt.

** Please note, we currently have limited inventory, so we will be making a second print-run in early 2022.

Jolly Old Elf Holiday Market

December 17th and 18th, you are invited to join us at the Vallican Whole for the Jolly Old Elf Holiday Market.

On Friday, the market will run from 3pm to 7pm, with musical entertainment by Sharon Lang. On Saturday, vendors will be open from 11am to 6pm, with a concert by Diamond Willow starting at 1:30PM.

Many beautiful local vendors sharing arts and crafts, perfect for holiday gifts. Warm drinks and treats for sale, and the chance to buy some limited edition Vallican Whole 50th Anniversary t-shirts!

Covid protocols in place – physical distancing and masks indoors. All are welcome, no admission charge. For more information, please email RARTS board member Nancie at [email protected].