The next several weeks of the “Voice of Business” will feature articles by our summer student employees. This week Tanis Makowsky writes about “The Old Schoolhouse”
After an impressive tour of the landmark “TOSH” building in Qualicum it was easy enough to conclude that The Old School House is undoubtedly a treasure of the Parksville/Qualicum community. Laden with unique and stimulating art, and the support of over 100 dedicated volunteers, the building functions with an excess of enthusiasm and excitement to share its’ art with over 30,000 annual visitors. Enthusiasm is running especially high as the building approaches two major anniversaries- the centennial celebration of the physical building, and the 25th anniversary of the arts centre. With a history as colourful as the yellow paint that encases the building, T.O.S.H. offers a uniquely interactive experience in which visitors are able to meet and pick the brains of the resident artists as they work away within their galleries. A delight for tourists and locals alike, the building now remains in the capable hands of talented people like Corinne James and Ron Hadley, who in 2010 were awarded the B.C. Community Achievement Award for their work at TOSH. The building is also overseen by a board of passionate members stemming from all different backgrounds including President Vivien Sears who for the past 12 years has been involved with TOSH bringing an undeniable passion for the centre, as well as her community. They encourage anyone who might be interested in lending their time to the community cornerstone to simply inquire within.
Music has become another key attraction to the TOSH building. Under the careful coordination of Music Director Ron Hadley the music scene has flourished to include summer concerts, concerts on Sunday in the Fall & Winter, as well as a fall music festival. The Fall & Winter “Music on Sunday” has a phenomenal lineup that celebrates classical, jazz, as well as many other genres including folk, world and bluegrass. In late September, watch for the much anticipated 8th annual “Harvest of Music” festival featuring the world famous traditional Japanese folk singer Taiko Itô.
For certain TOSH is a building worth celebrating- July 28th is sure to be an exciting day for the Town of Qualicum as TOSH commandeers its hold on Memorial and Fern with an exciting day of activities for the whole community to celebrate their centennial. The Art Grand Prix always produces spectacular paintings of different locations around Qualicum in a race against time for the skilled contestants. A wine and beer garden, live music, and a dinner for 300 will undoubtedly make for a memorable birthday bash for the building, the board, the volunteers and the incredibly supportive art-loving community. For more information about the summer concerts, Fall & Winter concerts, current and future exhibits, art classes available and more please visit their website or stop by TOSH.
For the full in-depth article please visit the Parksville Visitor’s Centre.