Scheduling popular summer events like the Sooke Fine Arts Show is difficult due to the pandemic. (File - Sooke News Mirror)

Scheduling popular summer events like the Sooke Fine Arts Show is difficult due to the pandemic. (File - Sooke News Mirror)

Sooke summer events schedule clouded by COVID

Public health guidelines hamper plans

The uncertainty surrounding COVID 19 restrictions is plaguing organizers of popular summer events in Sooke.

Organizers of events that have traditionally drawn large crowds are faced with making their own decisions based on following guidelines from the provincial health officer, said Christina Moog, communications coordinator for the District of Sooke.

Neil Poirier, president of the Sooke Fall Fair, said the plan at this time is to do something similar to last year, which included making portions of the fair available online, and setting up an information table at the Sooke Farmers Market.

“Another part of the problem is that most of our volunteers are over 60 and have reservations health-wise, which we fully understand and support,” Poirier said.

Steve Wright, a director with the Sooke Lions Club that puts on the annual Canada Day celebrations, said the most recent directive from B.C. chief medical officer Dr. Bonnie Henry last week has put the brakes on all large gatherings through the summer and potentially beyond.

There has been some discussion with the District of Sooke about hosting an event later on when guidelines permit.

“It’s very preliminary at this time, but like everyone else, that’s the best we can do so far,” Wright said. “We would like to do something like a family event that thanks all of the essential workers for what they’ve done.”

Britt Santowski, executive director of the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce, said the organization could not confirm anything definitive in terms of in-person events at this time.

“The landscape is still shifting (due to changing public health guidelines),” she added.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

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