Maria Medwedrich hands out cotton candy during the 2018 Canada Day celebrations. (Dawn Gibson/Sooke News Mirror)

A new look for Sooke’s Canada Day celebrations

Lions partner with district and others to bring a bigger and better event

There will be a new look for Sooke’s Canada Day celebrations, and organizer Steve Wright wants to spread the word that this year’s event will be something special.

“This is the first year where we’ll be working with District of Sooke, and this year we’ve pulled out all the stops to present a bigger and better event than ever before,” Wright said.

“We have a committee of about a dozen people, not all of them Lions, who are working together to introduce some new attractions for Canada Day.”

RELATED: Last year’s celebrations a blast

One of the main changes will be an expanded children’s zone that will be moved away from the main stage to a quieter area near the logger pole.

“We’re creating a real family fun zone where we’ll have children’s games, balloon art, giant lawn games, a photo selfie booth, assorted bouncy castles, and even an Enchanted Fables area where Disney princesses will be on hand to interact with the kids.”

He added that all of this has been made possible through the cooperation and help of the community, all pulling together to celebrate the country’s birthday.

“The Girl Guides will be there doing face painting and henna art, Western Foods has donated cake for the party, the Sooke Arts Council will have two big canvasses where everyone will be able to ‘paint a stroke’ to create a work of art that will later hang in the Municipal Hall … everyone is getting involved,” Wright said.

He also credited the work of the Harbourside Lions, the Sooke Rotary Club and the Lionesses for making the day possible.

On the main stage, the day will feature a magic show with Donald Dunphy, and music by the Chick Wagon Band, The Country Line, and finishing off with headliners, Knacker’s Yard.

Festivities will all take place at the Flats (Sooke River Campsite), and will officially start when the gates open at 11 a.m., just in time for a parade on the festival grounds at 11:30.

Folks will be able to sample their food from a variety of food trucks and, of course, families are invited to bring their own picnic lunches. The picnic area will also feature music bingo for the family, and a karaoke stage for the budding talents in the community.

Wright emphasized a few rulesorganizers have set to ensure that everyone has a good time. No pets (except certified guide dogs) will be allowed and smoking, vaping, and alcohol are prohibited.

“We invite people to come with their blankets and lawn chairs and make a day of it. It’s a chance to meet your neighbours and for the whole community to join in a safe, fun, family-themed day of celebration,” Wright said.

The day will end with a traditional fireworks display.

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