NATALIE HICKERSON

What makes Fernie special to you? 

Fernie’s community is like extended family. You are always surrounded by people you know. You can’t go into the grocery store or any store really without it being a social outing. I love that about Fernie. Most of the stores in Fernie are owned by locals. When shopping for any event I love supporting small local businesses, who are usually owned by good friends of mine. If there is a need in Fernie there seems to be someone ready to fill that need. There is a lot of love in this community.

These are meaningful to me because I love a small town and the atmosphere that goes along with it. I feel known and involved. My children go to a school where I know most of the teachers personally and some of them were my teachers growing up as well.

I am proud to be a Fernite because Fernie is home. We are surrounded by such beautiful landscape it is hard to not be in love with Fernie. Standing at the top of any mountain that surrounds Fernie has been the best experiences of my life. Not only is it beautiful, it is a warm community and my friends and family are here.


What makes you proud to be Canadian?

Any one privileged enough to be born in Canada should be very grateful for the life they are blessed to live. Canada has so much beauty.  Also, the people in Canada are so friendly and welcoming (for the most part!). When you look around at all the terrible and tragic things happening around the world right now it is almost impossible to not get down on your knees and thank God, every day for the wonderful life we get to live here in Canada.


What is your Fernie story?

My parents moved to Fernie in their 30’s to work and start a family. They were both very involved in the Ski hill and my father, Randy Gliege, was close friends with Heiko Socher (then the owner of the ski hill) and so he had a great deal of responsibility at the hill. My brothers and I were born in Fernie. Shortly after my youngest brother Connor was born, we moved to Kelowna to continue ski lift installations and maintenance.

From then on we moved once a year to a new ski resort (including Snow Basin in Utah and Whistler, and NY to name a few). When I was thirteen my parents decided, it was a good time to settle down in one town. So, having loved Fernie so much when they were young and because all their friends had remained there, they decided Fernie would become home. I have lived here ever since.

I am now 27 years old and have a husband and two beautiful sons who all call Fernie home. All my memories are here and we plan to stay. I can remember having my first bush party on the island. I had my first kiss in the Annex. I welcomed my son to the world in the Fernie Hospital. I lost my brother on the back roads by Morrisey and now when I go to visit his grave his head stone is part of the lizard range. I’ve stood on top of almost every mountain peak surrounding here. I love Fernie. It is Home.

 

 

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