Nelson is a rich, diverse community, with a sophistication not often found in a small-town environment. When you add Nelson’s incredible geographical beauty to the mix, you have an exceptional place to live and raise a family, work, own a business, or retire if that’s where you are in life. Nelson ranked behind only Vancouver and Victoria as the most livable city in the entire province.
The people of Nelson have an extraordinary capacity for giving. There is an active volunteering and community lifestyle which sees over 220 registered clubs and societies in the city. These volunteer organizations are the bedrock of Nelson, contributing in untold ways to the community fabric.
Municipal Facilities & Amenities
Nelson & District Community Complex
This recently renovated and expanded aquatic and fitness facility combines with a new multi-use NHL-size arena as Nelson’s centerpiece of indoor sports and leisure. Another facility next door, the Civic Arena, offers the town an invaluable second ice surface for more hockey as well as figure skating and speed skating.
Nelson Curling Centre
The six ice sheet Nelson Curling Centre is run by a team of dedicated volunteers who work hard to provide enjoyable, affordable curling for all. They offer curling at all levels, including competitive and recreational leagues for all ages, in a welcoming, accessible, and safe sporting environment. The venue has an upstairs lounge with a viewing area and fully stocked bar, and a commercial kitchen for catering.
Nelson City Campground
The Nelson City Campground offers visitors access to a forested, natural environment just off the downtown. It’s an easy walk to shopping, parks, and the beach.
The campground operates from May 1st – October 15th. Shared laundry, all-weather cooking facilities, and tourist information is available on-site. The campground offers: 7 full-service sites; 20 sites with electrical hookup; 20 tent sites; and 4 sites for RV units up to 40 feet in length.
Nelson and District Public Library
The modern Nelson Public Library provides free library memberships to residents of the City of Nelson, Area F, and South H. Anyone may access the Library to use materials on site and to use computers, internet, and wireless services. There are many special programs on offer and a welcoming children’s zone on the lower level.
Nelson and District Youth Centre
The Nelson and District Youth Centre fulfills a vision of the city to ‘Create a safe, accepting and empowering community where all youth can interact and access a variety of activities they need and enjoy‘. The centre features a superb indoor skate park and much more. There is a band room, art room, dance studio, indoor basketball court, pool table, plus foosball and ping pong tables.
The Nelson Tech Club
The Nelson Tech Club offers a meeting ground for people to socialize with like-minded enthusiasts who share a keen interest in all aspects of technology. Basically, we have a dedicated hackerspace (a.k.a. maker space, meeting space, workspace, etc.) where every Wednesday night we gather at the NTC Hackerspace and invite anyone who holds an interest to join us.
Nelson City Parks
Rotary Lakeside Park
This beautiful greenspace runs along Nelson’s waterfront.Located at the foot of the landmark orange bridge, its features include a long, sandy beach and change rooms, wide promenade, shade trees, an adventure playground, bocce and tennis courts, and boat launch. A full-service concession runs in summer. The city’s much-envied soccer fields and baseball diamond are located further along the waterfront.
The park is also the home of Nelson’s restored electric streetcar, which takes passengers along a portion of the waterfront during the summer months.
Lions Uphill Park
Lions Park is a neighbourhood park located in the Uphill area of Nelson. The playground and spray park are popular features, as well as a baseball diamond and basketball court. In winter, there’s an outdoor skating rink.
Cottonwood Falls Park
The key feature of this park is the waterfall. Cottonwood Creek blasts its way under the highway and is a stunning backdrop to the gardens of the Izushi Friendship Society. A community market at the north end of the park offers shopping opportunities and live music on summer Saturdays.
Situated in gardens of native greenery this park offers a summertime wading pool for little ones. There’s also a gazebo and playground. Some of the best photos in Nelson can be taken from the park’s rocky outcrop which is perched high above the downtown and waterfront.
Queen Elizabeth Park
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Located in the Fairview area of the city, Queen Elizabeth Park (affectionately known as “Queen E”) features all the amenities of a modern baseball field, as well as a powerful lighting system for night games.
Art Gibbon Memorial Park (Rosemont Park): Nelson’s Skateboard and Bike Park
A great place for a nature walk through the woods without having to leave the city, Art Gibbons Memorial Park is located in the Rosemont area of the city at West Richards Street and Choquette Avenue. In addition to walking trails, the Nelson Skateboard Park a world-class opportunity for skateboarders of all ages, while the Nelson Bike Park is a great placed for mountain bikers and BMXers to take up the challenge.
Nelson Area Education
Selkirk College has been called one of the best-kept secrets in the province. Nestled in the Selkirk Mountains in the southeast corner of British Columbia, we teach over 2,200 students every year — everything from University Arts and Science courses, trades, nursing, fibre arts and aviation to forestry, ski hill management and digital media. For forty years, students have been coming to the Kootenays for what we call the Selkirk Advantage — location, lifestyle and learning.
Nelson: 2001 Silver King Rd.
Phone: 250-352 6601
Castlegar: 301 Frank Beinder Way
Trail: 900 Helena St
Kootenay Columbia College of Integrative Health Sciences
2-560 Baker Street
Nelson, BC V1L 4H9
Kootenay Columbia College, formerly known as the Academy of Classical Oriental Sciences, offers diploma programs in both Registered Massage Therapy and Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as a Holistic Nutrition Certificate Program. The RMT Program is an intensive 22.5 month program and the TCM programs range from 3-year Chinese Herbologist, 3-year Acupuncturist, 4-year Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner, and 5-year Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine. The school is accredited through PTIB, the CTCMA and CMTBC.
RMT and TCM practicum students learn how to operate their own clinics, providing much needed affordable health care to residents and visitors in the Kootenays. The RMT Program includes over 550 practical hours through our RMT Student Clinic located right next to the Kootenay Co-Op. Call the number above for more program information, as well as to book into either of our student clinics.
Kutenai Art Therapy Institute
#201 – 601 Front Street
Nelson BC V1L 4B6
Phone: 250 352-2264 or toll free 1-800-580-6388
The Kutenai Art Therapy Institute’s primary purpose is to offer a post-baccalaureate two-year diploma program in Art Therapy that includes the needs of rural communities and emphasizes a cross-cultural perspective. The Institute follows the educational and ethical guidelines of the Canadian Art Therapy Association and the B.C. Art Therapy Association. The Institute also supports professional and community education in Art Therapy and promotes and provides Art Therapy as a community service.
Kootenay School of the Arts
606 Victoria St.
KSA offers a three year diploma program majoring in your choice of studio: clay, fibre, jewelry, metal or wood, as well as fall and winter community courses and week long summer school courses.
Nelson Christian Community School
810 Tenth Street
Nelson, BC V1L 3C7
Phone: (250) 352-0565
The mission of Nelson Christian Community School is to assist families by providing students with a Christ-centered, biblically integrated education which instills the vision and practice of excellence in academics, moral character, and service to others. NCCS is registered with the B.C. Ministry of Education and follows the B.C. curriculum guidelines. It is operated by the Nelson Christian School Society. The Society is made up of parents who have children in the school and other citizens of the community who have an interest in the work of the school. We seek to create a warm, caring and well-ordered environment in which students will be able to achieve their maximum potential in learning. Classroom visitors are welcome at any time. To make arrangements to visit call us at 352-0565 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Waldorf Education advances a child’s sense of goodness, beauty and truth—and inspires a lifetime love of learning. Ours is one of very few rural Waldorf Schools in North America. Part of Nelson’s educational landscape for 20 yrs, our fully accredited, non-profit independent school serves more than 180 students. Our policy is to welcome all students, regardless of family economic circumstance.
St. Joseph School is a Catholic independent school offering classes from Kindergarten through Grade 7. The academic program follows the prescribed BC Ministry of Education Curriculum. Christian values are emphasized in all courses taught.
For over a hundred years St. Joseph School has provided the residents of Nelson with an education which inspires and prepares students to learn, to work, to live fully and to serve God. Academic excellence is pursued in a school community based on the Christian belief that each individual is a unique person called into being by a loving God. The individual goodness, dignity and worth of each person is recognized. St. Joseph School provides a nurturing environment where the giftedness of both staff and students is mutually enriched. It is an environment where each individual is respected and respectful of others.
Nelson Area Public Schools
310 Nelson Ave.
Website: Hume School
LV Rogers High School
1004 Cottonwood St.
Website: LV Rogers High School
265 Bryan Road
Balfour, BC V1L 6M9
Phone: (250) 229-4224
Fax: (250) 229-5676
Website: Redfish Elementary
1605 Crease Ave
Nelson BC V1L 1A5
Phone: (250) 352-3182
Fax: (250) 352-9761
Website: Rosemont Elementary
South Nelson Elementary
814 Latimer St.
Phone: (250) 354-4139
Fax: (250) 354-4407
Website: South Nelson Elementary
Trafalgar Middle School
1201 Josephine St.
Phone (250) 352-5591
Fax (250) 352-6522
Website: Trafalgar Middle School
The Interior Health Authority (www.interiorhealth.ca) is responsible for health care from the Kootenay Boundary Health Service Area, which includes the local health areas of Arrow Lakes, Castlegar, GrandForks, Kettle Valley, Kootenay Lake/Nelson (Slocan City in the north-west down the Slocan Valley to Salmo in the south, Nelson, North Shore and Balfour to Riondel, Crawford Bay and Gray Creek, Kaslo north to Howser and Duncan Lake),and Trail. Kootenay Boundary is one of four HSA’s within Interior Health.
Kootenay Lake Hospital
3 View Street, Nelson, BC
Phone: (250) 352-3111
- 24-Hour Emergency Services
- General Medicine
- Day Surgery
- Obstetrics & Gynecology Surgery
- Maternity Services
- Rehabilitation Services (Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy)
- Pharmacy Services
- X-ray Services
- Laboratory Services
- Mental Health Services
- Addictions Services
- Social Work Services
- Dietitian Services
- Diabetes Education
- Chronic Disease Management
30 Beds and newly renovated Maternity Ward and O.R. with state of the art equipment.
Nelson Transit System
The Nelson Transit System currently operates four routes in Nelson. Complete information is available on their web page.
Slocan Valley and Rural Transit
Loomis, Purolator, Federal Express
208 Hughes Road
The Castlegar Airport has a total land area of 85 hectares and includes, air terminal building of 1,423m2 built in 1971, flight service station with limited hours of operation, combined services building (firehall and maintenance garage) of 622m2 ,and one runway (1615-metre or 5300-foot)
– Downtown Castlegar – 5km
Nelson – 41km
– Trail – 26km
– Grand Forks- 73km
– Rossland – 36km
Nelson Fire & Rescue Services
919 Ward Street
Phone: 352-3103 (Non-emergency)
Under the direction of Fire Chief , the department consists of 1 Assistant Chief, 4 Captains, 6 Full Time Professional Fire Fighters as well as 21 Trained Auxiliary Fire Fighters (part paid). The Fire Department has four pieces of fire apparatus: which respond to more than four hundred fire calls annually. Today’s role of the department an 82 4×4 840 Pumper (Hub), a 77 Ford 1050includes such tasks as Medical First Responders, “Jaws of Life” Vehicle extraction, High Angle Rope Rescue, Confined Space Rescue as well as Hazardous Goods Incidents. The department serves the City of Nelson and a large contracted area for the Regional District of Central Kootenay.
Nelson City Police
606 Stanley Street
Nelson, BC V1L 1N4
Phone: (250) 354-3919
Fax: (250) 354-4179
The Nelson City Police Department is comprised of seventeen sworn members, nine reserve officers, one Executive Assistant, one Court Liaison Secretary, four Police Dispatchers, three By-Law Enforcement officers and two Victim Services providers. The department also has part-time dispatchers, guards and matrons. The department is under the command of a Chief Constable with one Inspector as the Administration Officer.
The primary mandate of the Department is to provide a safe, crime-free community for our citizens to learn, work and live in and for our youth to flourish in. Through our efforts, we strive to reduce the fear of crime, provide redress for victims, resolve conflict and promote social harmony. Our proactive initiatives in the fields of covert drug enforcement, traffic enforcement, community liaison and education augment our duty to routinely investigate crimes and bring offenders to justice. These targeted objectives are the product of consultation with the Police Board, City Council and a number of community groups and stakeholders.
The following links are to local non-profit community group web sites. If you belong to such a group and have a web site, please let us know and we’ll add you to the list..
Sports and Recreation
Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park
Kootenay Mountaineering Club
Nelson Curling Club
Nelson and District Aquatic Centre
Nelson and District Riding Club
Nelson Jr. Leafs Hockey Club
Nelson Minor Hockey
Nelson Tennis Club
Nelson Youth Soccer
Nelson Mixed Slowpitch
Kutenai District Scouts
Nelson Speed Skating Club
Arts and Culture
Arrow Lakes Arts Council
BC Registered Music Teachers
Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance
Kootenay Gallery of Art, History & Science
Kootenay Lake Historical Society
Nelson & District Arts Council
Nelson Municipal Library
Nelson Road Kings Car Club
Oxygen Art Centre
Shambhala Music Festival
West Kootenay Bluegrass
West Kootenay Regional Arts Council
Kutenai Art Therapy Institute
Academy of Classical Oriental Science
Service Clubs & Non Profit Organizations
Nelson Fresh Tracks Toastmasters Club
Osprey Squadron Air Cadets
Nelson Lions Club
Nelson & District Seniors Coordinating Society
West Kootenay Women’s Association
Nelson & District Hospice
West Kootenay Eco Society
Nelson Rod & Gun Club
Nelson Community Services Centre