Festivals Kelowna president Richard Groves and executive director Renata Mills wrap themselves in the flag during the announcement of preparations for the 2018 Canada Day festival. (Alistair Waters/Capital News)

Festivals Kelowna cancels Canada Day celebrations for second year in a row

The group cited logistic issues in their announcement

  • Jun. 17, 2021 12:00 a.m.

Festivals Kelowna has decided to cancel their annual Canada Day celebrations for the second straight year.

With large outdoor gatherings permitted under phase three of the province’s restart plan, which lifts on July 1 at the earliest, the group said that preparing for Canada’s birthday in Kelowna — which draws over 65,000 annually — isn’t feasible right now.

“Preparing for such a sizeable, complex event requires a longer lead time than is currently available to us,” said Renata Mills, the executive director at Festivals Kelowna, in a June 17 announcement.

“Additionally, after such a tough year for our local restaurants, breweries, and wineries, we believe Canada Day presents a great opportunity for them to shine and welcome guests to their venues.”

The group noted that in consultation with the City of Kelowna, both parties have agreed to postpone Canada Day festivities to 2022.

“We will instead focus on producing a celebration for this fall when our community can again gather and enjoy all the great elements of a festival including live music, games, food, and possibly fireworks,” said Mills.

However, the group is still offering the following programming for the summer:

  • Kelowna Buskers Program – Underway and accepting participants
  • Pianos in Parks – The first of six pianos will be placed on Friday, June 18
  • Parks Alive! – The concert series launches on Tuesday, July 6 at 6 p.m. on Bernard Avenue. Concerts are scheduled to run Tuesday through Saturday evenings each week until August 28.
  • Arts on the Avenue – Scheduled for July 29 on Bernard Avenue
  • Valley First New York New Years

READ MORE: Lady Dia selected as City of Kelowna’s artist in residence

READ MORE: Comedy is back this July in Kelowna


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