Dates: 28 & 29 February, 2004

Reviewers: Ed Farolan & John Jane

 

Heather Jeal who runs an Arts and Culture e-zine in the Sunshine Coast, Going Coastal Magazine (www.goingcoastalmagazine.com), met us at Molly's Reach Restaurant, the landmark restaurant popularized in the long-running TV series, Beachcombers. We were given a mini-tour of the city by Cindy Buis who runs Artworks Tours www.destinationsunshinecoast.com, and visited a number of galleries as well as a nice stroll along the Gibsons seawalk.

Molly's Reach

Later in the evening, Heather took us to dinner at Leo's Tapas and Grill, a family-owned Mediterranean restaurant in the heart of Gibson's Landing specializing in Greek cuisine. The prices of their specialties range from $12 - $15 a plate. We had a seafood platter which included salmon, halibut, calamari, and oysters which was typical of Greek cuisine, and roast lamb which was really tasty. The restaurant serves huge American-style platters, so be sure you're starving before you come here for dinner. As we dined and savoured the cuisine, a jazz band headed by pianist and vocalist Luci Herder played soft Brazilian samba, jazz songs and Nana Mouskouri favourites.

After dinner, we were treated to a play written by American playwright Edward Albee, Seascape. Albee is known for his plays Who's afraid of Virginia Wolf? which was made into a movie starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, and Zoo Story. It was presented at the Heritage Playhouse, a heritage building built in the 1920's as the Woman's Institue Hall. It was reconstructed recentlyand now seats approximately 150 people. It is designed, as the name implies, after the type of architecture of the pioneers who settled for the first time in the West Coast. Different local theatre groups perform here, and the particular group we watched was 'Word of Mouth', headed by Scott Harris who also played the role of Charlie in this play. It's an excellent acting group, and the professional ambience they displayed was impressive.

Harvest House

It was finally time to hit the sheets. We stayed at two different places (Ed at Harvest House, owned by Sandra and Jurgen Ludwig (www.aharvesthouse.ca) and John at Seascape owned by Wayne and Sherry Royal). (www.seascapebedandbreakfast.com) Both are excellent 'Bed & Breakfast' establishments, just 10

Gibsons Harbour

minutes away from the Langdale Ferry at the top of the newly developed Bonniebrook Heights.

 

 

 

 

 

At Harvest House the private entrance led to a beautifully decorated room with a private en-suite and fireplace. Across the hall, was a comfortable and fully-equipped lounge with cable TV, a VCR and tapes from fairly recent movies. Complimentary coffee, tea, juice, fresh fruits and chocolates were also available for guests. Undoubtedly, the highlight of my stay was Sandra's and Jurgen's breakfast. Starting with a smoothie, a blend of fruits, natural yogourt and muesli, followed by home-cooked apple bran muffins and a specially brewed coffee. Then, Jurgen's specialty--eggs benedict. Eggs benedict never tasted so good. He said it was his special sauce that gave it its zest. Finally, an apple pancake mixed with fresh blueberries, again cooked to perfection. Sandra and Jurgen have worked all their lives in five-star hotels here and abroad and know what it's like to run a business like this.

Seascape B & B

Likewise, John was afforded the spacious comfort of Seascapes’s Cedars room which included a four piece ensuite bathroom with corner soaker tub and separate shower. Outside the room’s private entrance there was a patio overlooking Georgia Strait with the hot tub just a few short steps away where one can relax under the stars. Next morning, John was greeted with a hearty breakfast that started with orange juice and a delicious fruit plate which included slices of mango, pineapple,oranges and strawberries. This was followed by freshly baked apple-cheddar muffins, strawberry filled croissants and locally blended Twentyman's coffee.

The Sunshine Coast is, of course, famous for the hundreds of artists that have made the region their home and Gibsons has its fair share. Gibsons Landing Gallery, (www.gibsonslandingbc.com) located on Marine Drive is a co-operative gallery that featured ‘The Red Hot Show’ throughout February. Patricia Leigh Forst’s ceramics, Diane Clark’s jewelry and landscape art by Co-op president Ed Hill are just some of the many works on display at the gallery.

'Waiting for theThaw'
painting by Ed Hill

Ed Hill was born in Ontario in 1948. At 20 he joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and in 1969 he found himself posted to Surrey, British Columbia. He studied art at high school but his dream of becoming a productive professional artist didn't happen until quite recently. Over the years Ed has continually experimented with various art forms. His paintings, available at the gallery in lithograph form, seem to capture that illusive energy of nature.

At the Westwind Gallery on Gower Point Road, visitors will see some incredible artwork by Greta Guzek. Her vivid colours have become a distinctive feature of her work, which has gained wide appeal throughout Canada. After completing a Fine Arts degree in South Africa, Greta moved to the Sunshine Coast where she now works out of her studio in Gibsons.

When you head out to Gibsons, be sure to check the calendar of festival events by visiting Gibsons website at www.gibsons.ca

. 2004, Ed Farolan & John Jane