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Athletes and authors part of Celebration 2010

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Two of the flagship events during Celebration 2010 will be the Literary Leanings and the Olympic Experience, both offering professional athletes and writers the chance to meet with their peers in the community.

Whistler is home to many medal-winning athletes and in recognition of this, the Whistler Museum and Archives Society is hosting Olympic Experiences, a night where local athletes will share their memories, tell stories and participate in a trivia game.

Among the guests will be downhill skiing world cup champs Steve Podborski and Rob Boyd, freestyle skier Kennedy Ryan and a mystery Olympic medalist.

Olympic Experiences is on Saturday, Feb. 22 from 7 to 9 p.m at MY Place. Admission is free but attendees are encouraged to get into the Olympic spirit by dressing up in their old Olympic or World Cup sporting uniforms, or just old time ski clothes.

Put aside the fine physical specimens for a moment and let’s move on to the wordsmiths. It’s time for some Literary Leanings, a festival of literature, food and drink brought to you by the Whistler Writers Group. On Sunday and Monday nights, Feb. 23 and 24 from 9 p.m. at Uli’s Flipside, writers from Whistler to Vancouver will read a selection of their works.

The line up for Sunday Feb. 23 is:

• Adam Lewis Schroeder whose short fiction collection, Kingdom of Monkeys has received glowing reviews across North America.

• Nancy Lee has earned numerous fellowships and prizes, including a National Magazine Award and the prestigious Gabriel Award for Radio. Her collection of stories, Dead Girls, was named Book of the Year by Now Magazine and one of the best books of 2002 by the Globe & Mail and the Vancouver Sun. She is currently at work on a novel entitled, Born Slippy.

• Jennifer Cowan has written multiple episodes of the television dramas Traders, Edgemont, Ready or Not and scripts for Liocracy, Bob & Margaret and Quads. She also produced and directed the award winning documentary Douglas Coupland Close Personal Friend.

• Stella L. Harvey started the Whistler Writers Group and has completed a novel and several short stories that have been published in both the Question and Pique Newsmagazine.

• Pam Barnsley started as a newspaper reporter and went on to write for magazines and television (the old Beachcombers show). She co-wrote Hiking Trails of the Sunshine Coast and some recent short stories appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. She has just finished a mystery novel set in Whistler.

The lineup for Monday, Feb. 24 is:

• Bonnie Bowman’s first novel Skin won the Anvil Press International three-day novel contest, the national ReLit book award in 2001 and was optioned for a movie in 2002. Bonnie has also contributed short stories to anthologies and literary magazines, written two plays that were performed in Calgary last year, and spent more than a decade as a working journalist and songwriter. She has just completed her next novel, Spaz .

• Stephen Vogler is a writer of fiction as well as print and radio journalism. He is the author of Whistler Features , described by BC Bookworld as "a collection of essayish discussions on mountain culture, real estate prices, champagne powder and irritating little dogs in sweaters."

• Brandi Higgins is a student in the Creative Writing Program at SFU. She writes essays, short stories and letters to the editor. Two of Brandi’s stories were published in Pique Newsmagazine in the Whistler Writers Fiction Series, and one story received honorable mention in the CBC Northern Lives Writing Contest.

• Rebecca Wood Barrett’s short film, The Inquisitor, screened in festivals worldwide and was presented on television in the Shameles Shorts and The Independent Eye series. Rebecca's award-winning short story Crush, previously published in The Antigonish Review and Pique Newsmagazine, was made into a short film.

• Karen J. Dawson writes creative non-fiction based on her life experiences living in Whistler since the ’60s and was a regular contributor to the Sea to Sky Voice.

For further information about these events or the Whistler Writers Group please contact Stella at Stella25@telus.net or at 604-932-4518.

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