A beautiful 100-year-old Invermere BC log building houses Pynelogs Cultural Centre and Art Gallery, the home of the Columbia Valley Arts Council. During the course of the year, Pynelogs wears many hats:
- It’s a year-round art gallery displaying the works of more than 150 valley artists and artisans
- It’s the main venue for many arts- related events such as the monthly Cinefest films, music, dramatic and comedy concerts; arts and crafts workshops; Wings Over the Rockies workshops and presentations – and more.
- The popular Pynelogs Café, with its outdoor deck, serves delicious lunches and afternoon teas Tuesdays through Saturdays during the summer season.
The building is situated in the stunning green, tree-shaded Kinsmen Park, overlooking two beautiful lakes. The main entrance looks out to tiny Dorothy Lake, not much bigger than a large pond, with a fountain in its midst and ducks, geese and painted turtles at home in its waters.
The back of the building overlooks Lake Windermere. A heritage botanical garden on the property features heritage fruits and vegetables from the late 19th and 20th centuries and the community Greenways Trail commences here on the property.
That is Pynelogs’ present day story. But it is certainly not the only one. The beautiful log building has seen several lifetimes since 1914 when it was built by Robert Randolph Bruce, a Scottish land developer who settled in the area and eventually became the Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia. Bruce was interested in developing the area and brought many of the valley’s early settlers from the United Kingdom to work in his Columbia Valley Fruit Lands Company.
He built Pynelogs for his English bride, Lady Elizabeth Bruce. Unfortunately, Lady Elizabeth died soon after her arrival and her grave is under a gazebo on the property, looking over Lake Windermere. Randolph Bruce bequeathed the building to the District of Invermere in the 1930s.
Since that time, Pynelogs has been the local hospital, a group home and now, after an extensive restoration in 2004-2005, a cultural hub for the Columbia Valley, fully enjoyed by residents and visitors alike.
For more information about Pynelogs Cultural Centre and the Columbia Valley Arts Council, please visit: http://columbiavalleyarts.com or call 250-342-4423.
Featured image credit: Will McKenzie