Arts and Culture
You will be surprised at how much Vernon has to offer for arts and cultural events. Greater Vernon has a heritage that is rich in arts and culture and is woven into the fabric of our people and our city.
You can easily spend the day discovering the rich culture and diversity of Vernon, whether it be art galleries and live music, live theatre or outdoor murals.
Here are just a few of the many options to explore:
Vernon Public Art Gallery
Since 1945, the Vernon Public Art Gallery has operated as a not-for-profit, charitable organization committed to fostering an appreciation of the visual arts for all members of the community. A part of the community for 60+ years, the Gallery has successfully evolved from an amateur to a professional gallery is the oldest art gallery in the Interior Region of British Columbia.
Greater Vernon Museum and Archives
The Museum and Archives is rich in history of the North Okanagan, and dedicated to encouraging a deeper understanding of the North Okanagan through stories, objects, exhibits, archives, and shared experiences. The Museum is well known for its interesting events and exhibits.
The Arts Centre is a community based facility with a focus on arts education. All ages and levels of abilities are welcome. Beginner, intermediate and professional art classes, camps and workshops are offered.
Numerous community events are held here throughout the year.
Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre
The Vernon & District Performing Arts Centre is a not for Profit community theatre within the city of Vernon.. It is a top grade venue for entertainment in the entire North Okanagan. The centre was built in 2001 and is an extremely comfortable, auditorium, has superior sound quality and also well appointed backstage areas.
Okanagan Science Center
The Okanagan Science Centre is a non-profit, charitable organization whose mission is to "inspire scientific inquiry through dynamic and interactive learning experiences; to encourage all ages to appreciate the relevance and universality of science, and its application in our region."
Offerings include interactive science displays, weekly gallery shows, birthday party bookings, fun science experiments, school programming, home school support and field trips.
The Downtown Vernon Association has, over the years, commissioned local artists to paint at last count 29 murals of Vernon on downtown buildings. These murals are known around the world for their depiction of the history of our town over the years. These awesome creative works portray the history, culture, scenery, and folklore that made Vernon what it is today. These works of art cover several points in time from cowboys to geishas and as well as important locations, people, and events in our history.
In the summer, guided tours are available through the Downtown Vernon Association.
Historic O'Keefe Ranch
O’Keefe Ranch is a historic site telling the story of early B.C Ranching and endeavors to preserve the history and culture of the early ranching era for future generations.
The Ranch was founded in 1867 by Cornelius O'Keefe. The O'Keefe family lived on the Ranch for 110 years, at which time it was opened as an historic ranch. O'Keefe Ranch still houses one of the most complete collections of a family's belongings from the Victorian and Edwardian eras. In its earliest days the Ranch was at the end of the wagon road into the Okanagan Valley and the site of the stage coach depot. It was a small, self-contained community, with a Post Office, blacksmith shop, grist mill, and even its own church and cemetery. Many of the original buildings still exist, and are a delight to explore.
Today O'Keefe Ranch is operated by a non-profit society and is a registered charity welcoming travellers from all over the world.
Allan Brooks Nature Centre
The Allan Brooks Nature Centre is located in the old Vernon Upper Sir Weather Station overlooking the City, and was opened in July 2000 overlooking the spectacular views of 3 lakes and 5 ecosystems.
The Allan Brooks Nature Centre is committed to promoting the enjoyment of nature and increasing awareness of habitat conservation through environmental education and nature-related activities in the Okanagan region.
More reasons to call Vernon home
You can experience Vernon's arts, culture and heritage in all its forms once you make the decision to call our fair city home!