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VIDEO: Daysormay rocks Vernon stage for Sundog Festival

The inaugural festival is in conjunction with BC Culture Days and runs until Oct. 15

A three-week-long celebration of arts and culture is underway in Vernon.

B.C. Premier David Eby was in town Saturday and helped welcome the start of the inaugural Sundog Festival of Arts and Culture in Polson Park.

The festival is being held in conjunction with BC Culture Days, which began on Friday and runs until Oct. 15 with events taking place around the province.

Eby was travelling with Municipal Affairs Minister Anne Kang, and both spent early Saturday afternoon discussing local issues at SilverStar Mountain Resort.

At the Polson Park band shell, an area bustling with vendors, musicians and families, Eby thanked the volunteers who have made the Sundog Festival possible.

“These are the kinds of events that build community, that make life exciting in community and I’m so grateful to them,” he said, adding kudos to Vernon Mayor Victor Cumming for his support of the events.

As people in the park milled about in the background enjoying an afternoon of sunny, clear skies, Eby acknowledged it hasn’t been an easy wildfire season for the Okanagan

“We’ve had a tough summer, a lot of evacuees from the Okanagan came here to Vernon and I know that many of you played a role in welcoming people, fighting forest fires, supporting community members in a time of huge stress. So a chance to get together, celebrate, have a good time, listen to music — you deserve it.”

North Okanagan-Shuswap MP Mel Arnold reminded those in the park that Vernon was the launch site for Culture Days in 2022, “and we’re excited to see it return here again this year.”

He called the festival a chance “for everyone to immerse themselves in local arts and culture and explore some of the events throughout the Greater Vernon area over the coming weeks.”

Vernon-Monashee MLA Harwinder Sandhu gave a land acknowledgement before also thanking the volunteers who put in “countless hours.”

“We rocked it last year,” she said. “It’s a time to come together and learn from each other.”

Mayor Cumming extended thanks to the Arts Council of the North Okanagan for their work organizing the festival.

He encouraged people to take part in festival events and “celebrate the creativity and the talent that we have here in the Okanagan.”

Saturday featured live music in Polson Park as well as vendors from the Polson Night Market.

There are 36 free and by-donation events taking place, including visual art classes and demos, art talks, film screenings, self-guided tours, writing workshops, literary readings and more. A full list of events can be found online.

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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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