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Who’s got backcountry bragging rights?

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Well, the results of the Big Ol' Backcountry Brag Off are in, and it looks like the slednecks and powderhounds were busy, channeling their inner shutterbugs to vie for top prize in the Backcountry Lodges of British Columbia Association's (BLBCA) photography competition.

"With hundreds of entries submitted, it was tough for the judges to decide on top picks," BLBCA's executive director Brad Harrison said in a press release. "The entries really fired up our whole team on why, as backcountry enthusiasts, we're so passionate about the incredible playground in B.C."

Only one competitor could walk away with the top prize, a CAA-approved avalanche skills training course, G3 El Hombre skis, G3 skins and a one-year subscription to explore Magazine . David Gluzman's photo, "Memories," took home top honours for being "visually energizing," exemplifying an amazing day in the B.C. backcountry and aligning with B.C.'s adventurous spirit.

But there were lots of other prizes awarded: Suzanne Corno's "Afternoon Starlight" won in the hiking category and John Everts's "Paradise" captured the skiing category, while Peter Ng's "Migration" was winner in the wildlife/nature category.

To check out the winning submissions, visit www.bcbackcountry.ca.

 

ArtWalk expands

Whistler Arts Council may be facing a seriously depleted budget this year, thanks in large part to the elimination of their Gaming Grant funding and cuts to the B.C. Council of the Arts, but they're still planning on making the 2010 ArtWalk bigger and better than ever.

This is the seventh year for the popular summertime event, which features regional artists and artisans in a range of host galleries throughout Whistler from June 15 to Aug. 31.

Organized by the Whistler Arts Council, TD Canada Trust and Whistler Real Estate Company, the event matches selected artists with local cafes, retail stores, hotels and restaurants. The reciprocal partnership is designed to showcase regional artwork over a significant period of time, while drawing people into businesses. All artists and artisans featured on the Whistler Arts Council website and in the 6,000 ArtWalk brochures printed and distributed throughout the Sea to Sky corridor.

WAC will kick off the ArtWalk action with two rounds of opening receptions, complete with live, local entertainment, music, art and dance along the Village Stroll on Friday, June 25 and Friday, Aug. 6.

Due to popular demand, organizers are also bringing back the Function Block pARTy on Friday, July 16, which will see artists' studios and businesses in Function Junction opened up to the public to showcase works, live art, music and entertainment.

Applications from artists and galleries must be received by Monday, April 19. Successful applicants will be named on Monday, May 27. Eligible applicants must live between Lions Bay and Lillooet, and work in visual art, photography, fibre arts, pottery, multimedia, jewelry, leather or sculpture mediums. Artists interested in participating must e-mail three to six JPEG photos of pieces that they would like to display at ArtWalk, including one photo of a new piece that hasn't been previously displayed. Artists who are already exhibiting in a Whistler business or gallery can ask their venue to apply as a gallery. For detailed guidelines on applying as an artist or participating gallery, visit www.whistlerartscouncil.com .

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