The 2018 B.C. Summer Games are coming to the Cowichan Valley.
The news was made official by the B.C. Games Society this morning at an announcement at the Cowichan Aquatic Centre. About 100 people attended to hear the news.
Cowichan was up against strong contenders like Abbotsford and Coquitlam, among others, so it was never a lock that the Valley’s bid to host either the 2016 or 2018 BC Summer Games would succeed.
The Cowichan Valley Regional District’s 34-page bid featured the mandatory technical information but also evidence of the community’s willingness to get behind the games, including more than 75 letters of support from various sports organizations, political bodies, and service and community groups.
In April, North Cowichan council sent a request to the CVRD to see if the regional district would ask the community if it was keen on the idea of hosting the games in 2016 or 2018.
Four open house community meetings were held in late May and the community gave a loud and clear green light to proceed. School District 79 got on board, a bid committee was selected and work on the bid began in earnest.
The Cowichan Valley has hosted three major sporting events: the 1991 BC Winter Games, the 2005 BC Seniors Games and the North American Indigenous Games in 2008 - each was extremely well received.
In addition to being able to showcase the rural charm of the Cowichan Valley, the economic spin-off of hosting such an event is estimated to be $1.7-$2.2 million for a host community.
The B.C. Games Society announced other communities as hosts of 2016 and 2018 games, including Penticton as the host of the 2016 B.C. Winter Games, Abbotsford as the host of the 2016 B.C. Summer Games and Kamloops as the host of the 2018 B.C. Summer Games.
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