Hope – It’s what salmon, the iconic symbol of British Columbia, do every year. Struggling against the current and other natural stumbling blocks, they manage to make it to where they must be and thereby ensure the continuation of the species. This is such an appropriate metaphor for what has happened to an extraordinary event: The Great Fraser River Salmon BBQ Competition. After a successful debut in 2015, and overcoming a host of challenges in the planning of the 2016 event, the West Coast’s original Salmon BBQ Competition will take place on August 20, 2016 at Memorial Park in Hope, British Columbia.
Founder and organizer, Donald Stokes came to the brink of not being able to continue his involvement in the continuation of this unique event due to dealing with family health challenges and out-of- province distance issues. The BBQ competition is the first of its kind on the West Coast and Mr. Stokes devoted enormous amounts of time and energy to organizing and sponsoring the debut event. Hope is a small and tight community with limited resources – however, upon reaching out to various groups and contacts, the Hope & District Chamber of Commerce stepped up to the plate and has taken the reins to steer this event to another successful year. This year, the Great Fraser River Salmon BBQ Competition will be partnering with Hope Search & Rescue, a volunteer group that provides lifesaving location and lifesaving services to people who live in or visit the area. This much respected group will receive proceeds from the event to help them continue their amazing work and will be on-site with their gear to answer questions and let people talk with the real folks who are on the frontlines when accidents or disasters occur.
This year’s event will coincide with Concerts in the Park – a live music event held in the bandshell at Memorial Park – and Potters & Painters in the Park. This combination of attractions will offer visitors an exciting mélange of fun things to do, to see, to listen to and of course, to taste.
The Great Fraser River Salmon BBQ also has a couple of new features that are still in the planning stages.
Rumour has it that there might be an appearance by the elusive Sasquatch. The organizers are also working on having First Nations involved to welcome visitors to the event with a traditional drumming and singing, which is always a moving and exciting experience.
Applications for competitors are being accepted through July 15th , as well as applications for being judges at the event. For further information, interested parties can email the group at: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website: www.bcsalmonbbqcomp.ca.
There is also a facebook page The Great Fraser River Salmon BBQ Competition for people who would like to stay up to date on the latest news. Requests for applications can also be submitted by private message on facebook.
For more information, please contact Sharlene Harrison-Hinds at 604-869- 4634. Photos from last year’s events are available upon request and can be emailed within 24 hours.