Following on the heels of a lavish feature article in The New York Times, The Globe and Mail has brought Nelson into the nation’s media spotlight with a story titled Canada’s hippie outpost (and its killer backyard ski resort) by Tom Moloney.
Clocking in at 1,800 words, the story has plentiful references to the Kootenays’ so-called marijuana “cash crop,” but also details the growing popularity of the local ski scene. The story included interviews with locals Pat Renwick and Shelley Adams, and the reporter’s stay was arranged by Nelson Kootenay Lake Tourism.
“That’s wonderful that Nelson is in the news again, and that they’re recognizing we’re a progressive, forward-thinking city. We may be called hippies, but the article speaks to how progressive we are, with broadband, our restaurants, our wonderful recreation,” said Mayor Deb Kozak.
She noted that the article erroneously stated Nelson has 9,800 people. It is actually home to approximately 10,300. “That’s important to us. I remember when we cracked 10,000,” she said.
Maloney describes Nelson as a “mini-San Francisco.” And though he calls the region a “veritable secret to many skiers and snowboarders”, coverage such as his may mean that won’t continue to be the case much longer.
“In terms of us being discovered, I think we were discovered a long time ago,” said Kozak, laughing about the possibility of the article encouraging an influx of new residents.
“If you look at the projections, our population hasn’t changed much. We’re moving up, but it’s not going to be astronomical.”
Having detailed the history of Nelson, Maloney described the area as “a mix of landscape-art galleries, restaurants, throwback hippie culture, West Coast-shop vibe and an irresistable outdoor life.”
Maloney noted that a number of business people from places such as Calgary are moving to the area to take advantage of newly installed broadband infrastructure that allows them to work remotely.
At the end of the article, Maloney named All Seasons, Jackson’s Hole and the Library Lounge at the Hume Hotel as the the three best places to eat.
For accommodations, he recommended Cloudside Inn, Hume Hotel and the Baker Street Inn.
Maloney also mentioned Red Mountain, and recommended Kootenay visitors swing through Rossland while in the area.