The 45th annual Griz Days winter festival is back next weekend with celebrations and events happening all over town from Friday 4 March through Sunday 6 March.
Organized each year by the Fernie Chamber of Commerce, this year’s festival is set to be a return to a more familiar format after last year’s mostly virtual celebrations. This means fan favourites like live music (from local band Mt Rushka), the lumberjack show, fire twirlers, ice sculptors, the Extreme Griz competition, the downtown parade, professional fireworks display, and the Dummy Downhill will all be returning to this year’s line-up.
While the festival will look and feel much more normal this year, there are still a few modifications that have been made on account of the pandemic. Unfortunately, there will be no beer garden in Station Square this year, but people are encouraged to visit the nearby Fernie Legion (which has been closed by Public Health Orders for a lot of this winter) and other local bars/restaurants for a refreshment. The downtown parade route has been extended to accommodate increased physical distancing. The fireworks display will be at a higher elevation than normal to be viewable from all over the community if people aren’t comfortable gathering downtown.
Brad Parsell (Executive Director of the Fernie Chamber) explains, “Our team is so excited to bring a more normal Griz Days back to our community. Its our goal to balance spectacle, inclusivity, and public safety as we deliver the 45th year of this much-loved local event. We encourage people to check out the event schedule and safety plan on the Griz Days website, and to respect each other’s comfort levels as we enjoy the first major community event after last week’s easing of public health restrictions. Happy Griz Days Fernie!”
The full line-up of events (including the parade route) can be found in the Griz Days magazine that is available to pickup in most stores around town, and people can check out the official festival website – www.ferniegrizdays.com. The Fernie Chamber of Commerce would like to thank all the sponsors, staff, and volunteers for making this year’s festival possible – especially the title sponsor Teck, as well as the generous support from the Regional District of East Kootenay, and the provincial government of BC.