Tag Archives: Steve Andrews

Which comes first, the Nudist or the Squat?

The kind of questions that arise when debating our community’s heritage are, well, unique. We held our annual celebration of Whistler’s history, Icon Gone, on Wednesday and the evening’s debate eventually boiled down to this: Which is more emblematic of our community’s cherished free spirit, a long-gone squat which sheltered hundreds of ski bums with a propensity for public nudity, or the timeless act of naked skiing itself. Seriously.

Maybe serious isn’t the best word to describe an event featuring hippie wigs, an ode to drinking, G.D. Maxwell singing (screaming?) “WHO LET THE DOGS OUT!?” and the anti-serious “Big Kev” Mikkelsen, but you get the point. In all, eight brave souls got in front of a packed crowd at Merlin’s to plead their case for a cherished icon from Whistler’s past. In the end, our town came out looking pretty darn good.

A packed Merlin's, an iconic Whistler watering hole itself, was the perfect venue for another Icon Gone throwdown.

A packed Merlin’s, an iconic Whistler watering hole itself, was the perfect venue for another Icon Gone throwdown.

A celebration of, or nostalgia for, Whistler’s free spirit was a binding theme through much of the night. Mo Douglas, who has done an amazing job MCing all 6 Icon Gone’s, warmed the crowd by roasting every competitor before they had a chance to get on stage.

G.D. Maxwell opened the ceremony with an ode to dogs, and the integral role they have played in fighting ski town solitude over the decades. Little known fact: a dog once ran for mayor of Whistler (and some in attendance last night evidently  wish Bob the Dog had won.) Max’s opening-round opponent, Emily Wood, narrowly took the bout with an ode to Whistler’s ultimate pioneering spirit, Myrtle Philip.

Emily Wood educates the crowd on how Myrtle Philip willed the community of Alta Lake into existence.

Emily Wood educates the crowd on how Myrtle Philip willed the community of Alta Lake into existence.

Up next Steve Andrews took the stage armed solely with his acoustic guitar and a nice little ditty about Dusty the Horse, everyone’s favourite taxidermied farm animal. Steve definitely had the best audience participation of the evening, as seemingly everyone was singing along with his Johnny Cash-inspired chorus. Despite the audience’s vote, defending champ Angie Nolan won over both judges (Museum prez John “Bushrat” Hetherington, and Whistler Question Editor Tanya Foubert) with her spirited defense of Whistler’s most famous squat, Toad Hall.

Steve Andrews won the crowd.

Steve Andrews won the crowd over by singing about a dead horse.

Mandy Rousseau used her generally quiet demeanour to totally floor the judge’s and audience with a hilarious profile of naked skiers. The Icon Gone neophyte managed to beat out event veteran and inaugural champion Stephen Vogler’s ode to drinking, despite the fact that virtually everyone in attendance, and virtually none were naked.

Know your market.

Know your market.

The final opening round match-up saw Kevin “Big Kev” Mikkelsen up against veteran scribe Michel Beaudry. Both had compellingly nostalgic performances: Kevin listed the powder-preserving advantages of the fast-disappearing fixed-grip chairlift, while Michel Beaudry celebrated the humility and free spirit of the under-appreciated Stefan Ples. Michel took the round, possibly due to his dominance in the facial hair department (no offense to Kev’s mutton chops).

Big Kev (at right) and Michel Beaudry's moustache (center background) simultaneously evoke memories of a quieter, simpler era.

Big Kev (at right) and Michel Beaudry’s moustache (center background) simultaneously evoke memories of a quieter, simpler era.

The subsequent rounds were a blur of debate, dispute, and a little debauchery, but in the end, Angie Nolan simply wanted the prize the most. In the second round she managed to explain how every other icon up for debate was fundamentally indebted to the spirit of Toad Hall, and in the final showdown against Mandy and Max (who was voted back in as a wildcard) sealed the deal by proclaiming :

As long as we remember to break some rules, Toad Hall will never be gone.

And that is how you win Icon Gone.

Angie reclaims the crown, the belt, and the glory.

Angie reclaims the crown, the belt, and the glory.

A HUGE thanks to all the competitors, our judges, Mo Douglas, our sponsors (Merlin’s, Araxi, Whistler Foto Source, Sushi Village, Purebread Bakery, and the BC Provincial Government) and everyone who made it out to the show. Is Icon Gone now a thing of the past, or will it continue to make history in the near future? Only time will tell.

Competition Bracket - final results

Can We Crowd-Source Democracy?

FEB-ss-poster

Over the last decade we have witnessed the most rapid technological advancement in human history. First and foremost, the Internet has completely changed how we communicate and interact with each other. Websites such as Wikipedia and YouTube have proven that, with the right technologies, vibrant, purposeful communities can emerge around crowd-sourced content. New applications using this open, collaborative system are created every day.

Can the success of open-source be applied offline to other aspects of society? Steve Andrews believes the potential is nothing short of revolutionary, and will be sharing his insights at the Whistler Museum’s next Speaker Series event.

Steve is extremely excited about the implications of the open-source paradigm, especially its potential to replace hierarchical, top-down power with collaborative broadcasting by and for the masses. With his presentation “Collaborative Communities: How the Open-Source Movement can Transform Society” Steve hopes to pay this enthusiasm forward.

The talk will begin with a historical overview of the open-source movement, discuss some of the more practical and effective applications of this collaborative paradigm, and present an alternative to what he considers overly centralized and bureaucratic governance models. The presentation will conclude with an interactive workshop; guests are encouraged (but not required) to bring a wifi-enabled laptop, smartphone, or tablet. This is democracy in action in the 21st century!

***

When: Wednesday, February 20th; Doors at 6pm, show 7pm-9pm
Where: Whistler Museum
Who: 19+
Cost: $7 regular price, $5 for museum members

To purchase tickets (seating is limited), call the Whistler Museum at 604.932.2019, or visit us at 4333 Main Street, just behind the library.

There will be a cash bar featuring the Whistler Brewing Company and Jackson Triggs Wines, as well as complimentary coffee served courtesy of the Whistler Roasting Company.

Presenter’s Bio: Steve Andrews is a B.C.-born and Whistler-based creative thinker and multimedia storyteller. Though he completed stints at the University of Southern California and Simon Fraser University, his most rewarding lessons have come through travelling the world. Steve’s outside-the-box thinking and strong convictions were on full display last autumn when he was one of the youngest candidates in Whistler’s hotly contested municipal election. He currently runs his own creative services firm, is a freelance writer, and still shreds over 100 days each winter.

About Whistler Museum’s Speaker Series: More than mere repositories of old stuff, museums are institutions of ideas, venues where communities share, debate, and explore their thoughts on the world at large. To that end the Whistler Museum hosts regular Speaker Series events featuring presentations on a diversity of subjects: from the usual suspects of mountain culture and adventure travel, to the environment, design, current events, and beyond. These events are hosted on the third Wednesday of the month, October through April (minus December), and present the perfect opportunity for locals and visitors alike to encounter compelling stories in a relaxed and sociable atmosphere. All Speaker Series events have a cash bar and are 19+.