Candace Linde

98 years of terrific community effort

Sooke Fall Fair is "Science in Action"

Believe it or not, the Sooke Fall Fair is entering its 98th (yes, 9-8) year. And even with the fair nearing the century mark, organizers still manage to keep things fresh.

There are quite a few surprises for 2011, said fall fair president Candace Linde.

“Our theme (this year is) Science in Action celebrating the International Year of Forests.”

Linde, bubbling with enthusiasm, said “science is in our everyday life.” To demonstrate this, the fair is introducing Mad Science on Sept. 10 at 4 p.m. It is an international organization that puts on demonstrations and gets kids engaged with physics, biology and chemistry while having fun.

“They come to schools and they put on a lot of experiments, the ones that go kaboom and foam (up) and different things.”

The fair is also debuting Kitchencraft science. Visitors receive a passport that they take to various stations like the “Candy-O-Matic” booth showing how candy is made, or marvel at a balloon that expands from carbon dioxide gasses released from yeast feeding on flour.

“They go through each of those activities, get their stamp … and they will get a coupon,” said Linde, which gives five free entries into the fair next year.

She encourages everybody, especially children, to participate by entering something they’ve made, whether it’s a teapot or a painting or a piece of poetry.

“It’s all about self esteem. You’ve got to encourage young people to move on with their skills and build them, and be proud of who they are and what they do. That’s what this is all about as well as involving the whole community and showing off the community,” said Linde, who knows more than a little about the subject working as an education assistant at Journey Middle School.

Also new this year will be an “exciting and high energy” skateboarding demo put on by SideStep skateboarding school on Sept. 10 from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Eustace Road.

“They’re going to be setting up all their props and all their little ramps and everything. Everybody can come and watch all their demonstrations and everything they’re going to do for basically that hour before the fair opens.”

Aside from the additions to the event, staples like the “Sookeini” race on Sept. 10 at 3 p.m. (decorating a zucchini with wheels and launching it down a ramp) and pet parade, Sept. 22  at 1 p.m., will be taking place.

The parade, where kids proudly march their furry companions down the street in front of the community hall, was started 49 years ago.

“I’ll never forget when my children first started, that’s how I got involved 15 years ago,” said Linde who was “hooked” from the moment she saw the looks on their faces from taking part in the popular event.

The deadline for all entries is this Friday. For more information visit: www.sookefallfair.ca.