The Filberg Evolution

Words By Meaghan Cursons
Photo By Jenn Dykstra

It is perhaps one of the most quintessential views in the Comox Valley. The spit wrapping its sandy arm around the Comox Harbour. Denman and Hornby Islands adrift in the Salish Sea. The settlements of Courtenay and Royston giving way to green forests and mountains. Cumberland tucked away in the folds of the foothills and the Beaufort Range and Comox Glacier looming large in the background. Some of the foreground details have changed but the view remains as it has for thousands of years—simply stunning.

For those who don’t know the Filberg Heritage Lodge and Park, it is the location of a beautiful 5 bedroom Scandinavian themed home built in 1929 by logging baron Robert (Bob) Filberg, then President of the Comox Logging and Railway Company.

When Bob died in 1977 he bequeathed his nine-acre property and the Lodge, and a large sum of money (11 million dollars), to the Vancouver Foundation. But the Town of Comox petitioned the Vancouver Foundation for ownership of the property and in 1979, the community took over and dedicated it as a municipal Heritage site.

Since then the park has been a welcoming host for important rites of passage for generations of locals. Weddings, grad celebrations, family photos and the much loved Filberg Festival have filled the grounds with love, laughter and fantastic art and music. It is truly one of the great heritage gems of the Comox Valley.

I love this park. A lush coolness washes over you the moment you step inside the gates. I love the massive trees, the amazing gardens, the colourful quilts of flowers, the winding pathways, the sculptures and buildings, and the secret spaces. I love the private nooks and shady hollows for picnics or to curl up with a blanket and a book. I love the expansive views and the great span of beach, perfect for my daughter to explore.

I am also so excited to see the park reach out and invite a whole new generation of valley residents and visitors through its gates. It’s an exciting evolution filled with fantastic music, tasty local booze and decadent food. It’s a shift that is turning heads and drawing new energy to an important heritage space in our community.

Tria at the Teahouse is an important part of this evolution. The Tea House is not just for tea drinkers, friends! Chef Kathy Jerrit is offering up local wine, beer and spirits (Wayward Distillery, 40 Knots, Cumberland Brewing, Beaufort to name a few) as well as her acclaimed culinary creations. It’s like she’s finally come home, and this is where she was meant to be all along. Her mission to elevate the sandwich has found the perfect venue; and her soups, salads and treats are some of the best on the island. The teahouse is open Thursday through Sunday from 10-4.

Special ‘pop up’ evening events are also part of the plan, where local drinks are paired with delicious tapas, BBQ’s or other feature menus. Connecting with Tria at the Teahouse on social media is the best way to make sure you don’t miss out.

Four of these special evening events coincide with the Filberg Summer Concert Series where incredible live music on the beautiful new Filberg Stage will be paired with dining specials. Heading into its 4th season this summer, the Concert Series welcomes world class performers for a series of Thursday evening concerts that attract music lovers of all ages. This summer the series kicks off July 2 with Tower of Song, A creative and fearless tribute to the music of Leonard Cohen, presented by celebrated BC singer/songwriters Oliver Swain and Glenna Garramone.

Then on July 23rd the park welcomes Delhi to Dublin, and incredible fusion of Bhangra beats, Celtic fiddle, dub and electronica. There is going to be some serious dancing going on! August 16th the legendary acoustic roots ensemble The Bills hit the stage and on August 27th the series wraps up with a fantastic show with the “brother harmony” bluegrass and country sounds of the Cumberland Brothers with special local guest Fiddlejam!

Tria at the Teahouse will have special menus from 4-7 for all 4 concert dates including a take away picnic basket. You can order ahead and pick up a basket to enjoy on your blanket ‘festival style’. Tickets are $15. Kids under 12 year are free and very welcome! Dancing is encouraged and the vibe at these concerts is quite magical. I am a happy volunteer for the Concert Series which is an important fundraiser for the park.

This summer come and be part of the community that is re-discovering the Filberg Heritage Lodge and Park. Heritage spaces can be lush, sensual, delicious and musical. They carry a raw authenticity that seems to make everything taste, smell and sound better! Create time to come and sit with the people you love, sip an award winning beverage, savour local flavours and gaze at the timeless views of this truly incredible place we call home. You won’t regret it.




Category: Volume 3