The Atlas Affair: An Out-of-This-World Success!

Michelle Benjamin

Executive Director, Gabriola Arts Council

Wednesday, February 10 2016

ONE WORLD: The Atlas Affair, the Gabriola Arts Council’s second annual fundraising gala, was again a popular event, raising more than $14,000 for the Gabriola Arts Council (GAC), and spreading art and community spirit throughout Gabriola. Attendees gleefully bid on a diverse range of artistic offerings which had been created and donated by more than 50 local artists. 

The highlights of the evening (besides the stunning collection of art) was the performance of a Gabriola version of the popular folk song “I’ve Been Everywhere, Man,” performed by Shelagh Rogers and Gary Holmes, with the GAC board of directors as back-up singers, and the live auction of eight pieces of art by auctioneer extraordinaire Eric Boulton, ably assisted by Gabriola’s Member of Parliament Sheila Malcolmson. DJ Tim G had guests grooving in the early part of the evening, while the jazz-fusion sounds of Masamba kept people dancing until closing time. 

Local restaurants and businesses provided food for the event, which was served by a team of youth helpers. Volunteers - as always - were key to the success of the event, assisting in every aspect from planning, to set-up and logistics, selling tickets, tending bar, taking photos, and a variety of other important tasks throughout the evening.  Money raised will be spent on a variety of Arts Council projects, especially those that do not generate revenue such as the Healing Power of Art programs (Cancer Support Group and Intentional Aging), and the Youth Engagement Project. Some of the funds will be used to continue the renovation projects at the Gabriola Arts & Heritage Centre, and to seed new projects, including upcoming 20th anniversary celebrations in 2017.

Check out the GAC website ( to see photos of the event, and to read the lyrics of the song, rewritten for the event by Chris Straw.