From flocking to Victoria’s all-day live-music festival to hitting the slopes at Mount Washington with half-price lift tickets, Vancouver Island residents took full advantage of the province’s newest statutory holiday Monday.
B.C.’s Family Day was introduced around the province with large events in several communities.
The Island was hopping despite wet weather that blanketed the region and cancelled a Victoria performance by world-renowned poet Shane Koyczan.
Koyczan’s flight to Victoria was cancelled due to fog, but staying home in Penticton allowed him to take advantage of some leisure time.
“Ironically, by missing the Family Day concert, I was able to spend time with my grandma,” he said.
The Ship Point concert went on all day, drawing thousands to see bands such as Victoria-grown indie rockers Current Swell and rock-and-roll mainstays Trooper.
Visitors could also take a tour of Canadian Forces ship HMCS Saskatoon. Nearby, the Royal B.C. Museum held its own special events, boasting about its newest attraction, Tradition in Felicities, which celebrates 155 years of Victoria’s Chinatown.
Recreation centres throughout the capital region were open with a host of family-oriented events. In Nanaimo, residents had access to free swims and skates at the Nanaimo Aquatic Centre and the Nanaimo Ice Centre.
“For too long, British Columbians have had to go the long stretch between New Year’s and Easter without a break and that ends this weekend with the first Family Day,” Premier Christy Clark said in a statement released by her communications office.
Lift tickets were slashed in half at many ski resorts around B.C., and major free events were held in Vancouver, Prince George, Kelowna, Kamloops and Cranbrook.
“Whether you hit the slopes or take the kids on a hike, this weekend is about spending time together,” Clark said.
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