Fundival 2011: evening of fire and ice was a CLAAS act

Andy George
By Andy George
August 10th, 2011

Fundival patrons were treated to an evening of all things art, with benefits directed toward the Christina Lake Arts & Artisans Society (CLAAS) last week.   The annual fund raising event is dedicated to the continuing development of the Christina Living Arts Centre. You may ask, ‘Well, isn’t the Christina Living Arts Center already operational?’ While true, the society is still planning to build a set of artist’s studios including a large kiln to accommodate artists working with glass that will also heat the solar aquatic system greenhouse over winters. Also on the blueprint is an amphitheatre complex which will house outdoor concerts.   CLAAS’ determination to complete the original plans for the centre was evident in the preparations and execution of this year’s Fundival. The 2011 version was the third annual, taking place at the Christina Lake Community Hall, and offering a full course of artistic expressions.   All-you-can-eat food was served by Twisted Forks Catering, who thoroughly delved into the culinary arts. “That meal was so good!” expressed Area C Director Grace McGregor, “and the service was just excellent.”   Entertaining during meal service and afterward was the talented duo of pianist Joshua Caron and vocalist Catharine Turner. Caron, who will be attending the University of Toronto this fall, had a compilation of his best classical tunes for sale throughout the night.   Meanwhile, Turner doubled as the lovely showcase model during the live art auction. She gracefully displayed each piece of glassware, jewellery, painting and sculpture up and down the rows of seated guests, even as the bidding climbed.   “Last year, there were some well-to-do Albertan’s that consistently bid-up the art pieces,” commented art collector Ray Lafleur. “Which was great for the fundraising, but we ended up losing out on some of our top choices… this year we were a little more successful,” as he indicated his new Richard Reid watercolour.   Bob Dupee, chair of CLAAS, played the position of auctioneer only somewhat professionally; as he and his wife Lucinda were on the winning side of the bids more than once causing laughter from the audience each occasion.   A silent auction was concurrently held in a separate room. At the end of the evening, it was announced that nearly $5,000 was raised from the sales of the silent and live art auctions!   The Hip Sisters, who earlier in the evening offered a sensual belly-dance routine, closed out the show with a fire-spinning exhibition a safe distance away in the ballpark. No other act was able to authenticate the theme of fire and ice so convincingly.  

The art benefit certainly ended on high notes, pun unintended.