FILE — Stephanie Odermatt and Andy Duffy (right) were lined up at 7:20 a.m. Friday at the Vernon Winter Carnival office for tickets to Suds N’ Cider, which sold out in approximately one hour. The couple were well prepared with chairs, blankets, a fireplace and even breakfast as they waited among approximately 50 others in the cold to get tickets to the Feb. 1 Carnival event. (Jennifer Smith/Morning Star)

Letter: Ignore Carnival at your peril

Winter Carnival is one of the things that makes Vernon special.

For myself and many others, our winter carnival is one of the things that makes Vernon special.

The parade route is invariably lined, regardless of weather, by a significant percentage of our population. The snow sculptures at Silver Star attract many non-skiers to our ski hill. The hot air balloon glow light-up and sights of them floating across our sky are an iconic part of the carnival. Many of our teenage girls compete in the Queen Silver Star competition. This garners much free publicity for Vernon as these four events are always featured on our Okanagan TV station.

Lord knows how many thousands upon thousands of volunteer hours are put in to make carnival happen. So to say that I am concerned at the quibbling and foot-dragging by Vernon Council and our recreation department over where the winter carnival office will be housed and the costs for park space for the hot air balloons is most definitely an understatement. For goodness sakes what’s with you elected people? Have you forgotten what makes Vernon, Vernon?

Mr. Mayor and council: Myself and likely many others expect you to support our historic winter carnival. Being a hindrance is most definitely not appreciated. Many of our businesses participate by decorating their premises, sponsoring Queen Silver Star candidates and donating prizes.

Kindly revisit your lack of support and do what needs doing to keep our winter carnival great. 2010 was our winter carnival’s 50th anniversary; let’s make sure it gets to be 100.

Jim Bodkin

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