A Jimi Hendrix-inspired sand sculpture by Peter Vogelaar pictured at the Quality Foods Sand Sculpting Competition and Exhibition. The competition will now return in 2021, after the 2020 Parksville Beach Festival has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (File photo)

Castles in the sand: Parksville Beach Festival latest big Island event sunk by the pandemic

International sand sculpting competition among events sidelined

The 2020 Parksville Beach Festival has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Festival event manager, Wendy Sears, said it was a difficult and necessary decision to cancel this year’s event. A festival of such magniture would pose too large of a health risk at this point, she explained.

“We don’t know what travel is going to look like… we had many international sculptors coming or chosen to participate this year and we don’t even know if they can come,” she said. “And then the whole thing around the size of crowds – are they going to relax that?”

‘Roaring ’20s’ was set to be the theme for this year’s festival, which has been taking place since 1982. The event has had an average number of 122,000 annual visitors in the past five years.

READ MORE: People tab ‘Roaring ’20s’ as theme for Parksville sand sculpting competition

Sears said planning of the festival has been on hold for about a month, since social distancing protocol started to be enforced.

The cancellation includes the Quality Foods Sand Sculpting Competition and Exhibition, Art in the Park, Tim Hortons Summer Concert Series, Lunch with the Castles, Canadian Tire Sculpt like the Pros and the Coast Captial Savings Light-up! Show.

Cancelling the event will also have a significant economic impact on the region, said a release from the Parksville Beach Festival Society.

“Not only will many businesses, contractors, local not-for-profit groups serving as gate ambassadors and our society feel the financial impact of this cancellation, our community will feel the loss of a well-respected event that garners significant social cohesion and boosts community pride,” said society president Cheryl Dill. “While our heads are hanging low with this decision, we know we need to do our part for the health and safety of our community. We will continue to plan for a

fantastic festival in 2021.”

cloe.logan@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

CoronaviruseconomyParksvillequalicum beachTourism

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

From theatres to patios, Vancouver Island Symphony plays through the pandemic

A series of pop-up concerts are taking place in various locations from Saltair to Comox

Beloved Chemainus resident dies at 106

Dorothy Adair adored by the many people she met in the community in two short years

Sudden death leaves Shanahan family of five children without a father

GoFundMe campaign set up by wife Tiffany’s friend

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

‘Someone knows something’: a look into Vancouver Island missing persons with interactive map

There are more than three dozen people listed as missing throughout Vancouver Island

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

We’re asking you to lock arms with us, as we look to better days ahead

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

Man arrested for allegedly pushing unsuspecting seniors, jumping on cars at Parksville mall

Cops arrest man after ‘aggressive incident’ at Wembley Mall in Parksville

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Most Read