A Jimi Hendrix-inspired sand sculpture by Peter Vogelaar pictured at the Quality Foods Sand Sculpting Competition and Exhibition. The competition will now return in 2021, after the 2020 Parksville Beach Festival has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (File photo)

Castles in the sand: Parksville Beach Festival latest big Island event sunk by the pandemic

International sand sculpting competition among events sidelined

The 2020 Parksville Beach Festival has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Festival event manager, Wendy Sears, said it was a difficult and necessary decision to cancel this year’s event. A festival of such magniture would pose too large of a health risk at this point, she explained.

“We don’t know what travel is going to look like… we had many international sculptors coming or chosen to participate this year and we don’t even know if they can come,” she said. “And then the whole thing around the size of crowds – are they going to relax that?”

‘Roaring ’20s’ was set to be the theme for this year’s festival, which has been taking place since 1982. The event has had an average number of 122,000 annual visitors in the past five years.

READ MORE: People tab ‘Roaring ’20s’ as theme for Parksville sand sculpting competition

Sears said planning of the festival has been on hold for about a month, since social distancing protocol started to be enforced.

The cancellation includes the Quality Foods Sand Sculpting Competition and Exhibition, Art in the Park, Tim Hortons Summer Concert Series, Lunch with the Castles, Canadian Tire Sculpt like the Pros and the Coast Captial Savings Light-up! Show.

Cancelling the event will also have a significant economic impact on the region, said a release from the Parksville Beach Festival Society.

“Not only will many businesses, contractors, local not-for-profit groups serving as gate ambassadors and our society feel the financial impact of this cancellation, our community will feel the loss of a well-respected event that garners significant social cohesion and boosts community pride,” said society president Cheryl Dill. “While our heads are hanging low with this decision, we know we need to do our part for the health and safety of our community. We will continue to plan for a

fantastic festival in 2021.”

cloe.logan@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

CoronaviruseconomyParksvillequalicum beachTourism

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. Provincial Election candidates for the North Island riding. (Campbell River Mirror graphic)
Over 4,300 mail-in ballots returned so far in North Island district

Elections BC provides progress report before vote count

MMFN First Nation has said that it will restrict access to portion of Highway 28 that passes through the Nation’s land until a road use agreement is reached. (Black Press file photo)
Vancouver Island First Nation blocks highway access to logging trucks in Gold River

Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation restricting access for Western Forest Products pending road deal

Campbell River Remembrance Day Ceremony 2019. Campbell River Mirror file photo
Campbell River Remembrance Day Ceremony to go ahead in reduced form

Public asked not to attend; event will be streamed on social media, Shaw TV

Father Charles Brandt, a hermit priest. File Photo
Black Creek environmentalist and Catholic priest-hermit Father Charles Brandt passes away

He devoted his life to protecting and preserving natural habitats

Two suspects seen outside of Gord Knight Auto on Oct. 27 at around 4:15 a.m. Campbell River RCMP are looking for information on these suspects’ identities. Photo supplied by RCMP
RCMP look for suspects in break-in cases

Two suspects caught on surveilance video

Sooke’s Paul Larouche enjoys gold panning along the Sooke River, looking for small treasures. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
VIDEO: Island man finds niche audience by gold-panning on YouTube

Paul Larouche, 29, with over 215,000 subscribers, opens up about his journey

CBSA. (Black Press Media File)
4 sentenced in B.C. steroid smuggling, distribution ring that spilled into U.S.

Canadian Border Services Agency announced the results of a lengthy investigation it called ‘Project Trajectory’

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Search and Rescue Technicians carry a stretcher to the CH149 Cormorant during a 442 Squadron Search and Rescue Exercise in Tofino on February 28. (Photo by: Cpl Joey Beaudin, 19 Wing Imaging, Comox)
Father and son found dead after weeklong search near Pemberton

The father and son had set out for a day of mushroom picking last Thursday

A full moon rises over Mt. Cheam on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)
Rare full moon, Daylight Saving makes for a uniquely spooky Halloween – despite COVID-19

We can’t host costume parties but this weekend is still one for the history books

A woman wears a face mask and plastic gloves while browsing books as a sticker on the floor indicates a one-way direction of travel between shelves of books at the Vancouver Public Library’s central branch, after it and four other branches reopened with limited services, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, July 14, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
B.C. reports 234 new COVID cases, 1 death of senior who had attended small birthday party

Roughly 5,700 people are isolating due to being exposed to a confirmed case

MNP senior economist Susan Mowbray presents the State of the Island Economic Report on Thursday night to conclude the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance’s virtual summit. (VIEA image)
Not-so-rosy State of the Island report caps off virtual summit

Vancouver Island Economic Alliance’s summit took place online Oct. 27-29

A study by SlotsOnlineCanada notes there is at least 88 hours of top-rated horror movies for Canadians to consume this Halloween. (Unsplash)
Spooks and Chill study reveals Canada’s favourite horror flicks

88 hours of top-rated horror movies can fill COVID-19 Halloween

Most Read