Orange you glad we had this time together?

100-year-old hall in Fernwood to become a residence

It’s been around for 100 years in Fernwood. Now it’s time to say goodbye to the Orange Hall.

As a final farewell to a venue that has hosted everything from a bluegrass music club to Brazilian capoeira classes to an old-style Anglican Church, one last concert is being held on Sunday (Sept. 30) featuring local singer-songwriter Paul O’Brien.

“When I saw that it was closing I thought, ‘this is the last day available and I want to book it,’” said concert organizer Joan Athey. “Paul came to mind because he was the first person I saw perform at the hall in 2007.”

The hall has been sold and will be developed as a private residence. It was previously a temporary home to St. Mark’s Traditional Anglican Church.

The afternoon musical celebration is open to anyone – bringing an instrument is encouraged – and is a fundraiser for Slow Food Vancouver Island. The non-profit group will supply snacks for those who attend.

Athey plans to pass around a book to get people to jot down their stories about the hall, and will likely video the finale, then pass the good will on to the new owners.

It was unclear whether any of the original building will remain. Regardless, Athey said, the Orange Hall will go out in style.

“It’s not even the building, it’s more like the spirit of everything that’s happened there,” she said. “With one final jam, it’ll be a fitting finale for a place that has contributed so much to the community.”

editor@vicnews.com

One last jam

• A final concert/jam session happens at the Orange Hall, 1620 Fernwood Rd. Start time is 2 p.m. and the featured performer is Paul O’Brien.

• Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Advance tickets are available at orangehallfarewell.eventbrite.com.

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