Hi reader,

 

Birthdays are kind of arbitrary. And unless there’s a plan I don’t know about, we’re not even celebrating ours with cake. But I do feel it’s important to recognize our milestones: to lay out where we’ve been and where we’re going.

 

Raspberry was created a year ago after a lot of dreaming and no small amount of doing. It was born from the kind of wanderlust that leads you home instead of elsewhere, travelling among the people you’ve been passing all this time and finally making a connection. It came from a desire to see ourselves reflected in the place we live. From the get-go, we knew the arts and culture scene here in the Fraser Valley has a unique character — one that deserves to be cultivated, recorded, and held to the light.

 

So, in the past year, we’ve published 11 issues exploring a whole host of artistic genres and community topics. From Chilliwack to Fort Langley, from Mission to Abbotsford, we’ve sampled the sweet, the savoury, and the bitter, swigged poetry, and chewed on art. We’ve swum through history and slid down a few thespian rabbit holes. We’ve stopped to play games and dream of the future and talk about our favourite books. We’ve attended countless events and even held our own first annual event, Raiseberry, back in March. (We hope we’ll see you there again!) In so many ways, this year has been a thrilling and beautiful adventure.

 

We aren’t finished the journey; in fact, you’re about to read a new chapter. This issue begins Raspberry’s second volume, and we’re eager to work hard over the next year to paint this region’s art, culture, and community life into our pages. We’re moving forward with a renewed commitment to publish Raspberry in print, keep broadening our horizons, and meet old friends and new along the way.

 

Here in the valley, there’s plenty of fertile ground to explore.
So buckle up. We’re taking this baby for a ride.

 

Best,
Katie Stobbart
Editor-in-Chief