Elk Valley locals viewed banners during the annual Fernie banner launch on Thursday

Artistic banners line Fernie streets

Colorful banners filled The Arts Station on Thursday evening as part of the annual Fernie banner launch.

Colorful banners filled The Arts Station on Thursday evening as part of the annual Fernie banner launch.

Now in its 11th year, the banner launch invites locals to choose from an array of portraits, most of which represent Elk Valley living.

“[The] Fernie banner project is the envy of most communities big and small in British Columbia,” banner project coordinator Donna Miller said. “It’s amazing.”

This year the banner committee received just under 100 banner submissions, with 60 people entering to have their work chosen for display in Fernie.

“The youngest person that we of that entered is seven years old and the oldest is over 90,” Miller said of the wide variety of banner artists.

Individuals in the community were invited to sponsor a banner for $100, with the piece going up on 2nd Ave. for one year and then being moved to the Crownest Highway, also known as Highway 3.

After the banners are displayed for two years, the individual sponsoring the piece can take it home.

Artist Lauryn Sims stands alongside her “Singing Our Song” banner during the annual Fernie banner launch held at The Arts Station on Thursday April 16.

With a wide variety of work submitted, including acrylic, oil and water colour painted banners as well as plasticine, and coloured pencil banners, Miller said the project really emphasized the creativity in the Elk Valley.

“[The banner project] emphasizes how important the art culture is in the city of Fernie,” she added.