Wow, wow and I’ll say again, wow. There are not many positive moments in this town when you can look around, smile and know your being part of history. This past Canada Day at our pavilion was unquestionably one of those days. The entire downtown core was alive and buzzing with everyone slowly making their way towards all the music and hoopla coming from the summer jam at our pavilion. Putting on such an fantastic event is not easy, especially when you consider the tooth and nail birth of our BIA.
You see, planning this community event is just one of the wonderful things that our new Downtown BIA Merchants group can do. Yes, the same BIA that literally had to go to war with people dead set on letting our downtown rot. The issue even saw the return of failed mayoral candidate. Strangely enough, years later he returns to once again fight against what everyone in Squamish truly wants, a vibrant Downtown. The BIA battle got so fierce that even Councilor Mike Jensen, previously seen to be a Downtown supporter, sadly chose at the last minute side with the lowly anti-BIA money at the back of the room.
But through hellfire sometimes comes a little bit of heaven and boy howdy was that a life affirming good time as Squamish came together to celebrate our nations 139th birthday.
The highlights, among other things, were great local talent, a fantastic barbecue and the kicker of course was many people enjoying their first ‘legal’ beer at the pavilion. I’ve always loved the pavilion for what it is, an enviable asset serving as a perfect community gathering place. Faced with the archaic liquor laws in this province it was especially refreshing to see our un-official knapsack beer garden turn legit, even if it was for just one day.
Sadly, our beloved pavilion’s days are numbered due to previous governments cost saving measures of driving the huge wood beams straight into the dirt. Thankfully, as much as our governments of old tried to abandon our donwtown, amazing community champions have come to the rescue. Important to note is Gelato’s Greg Fischer who has been responsible for countless live acts breathing life back into Cleveland Ave. Not to mention Trinity’s Eric Armor who has dedicated countless hours to put on event after fantastic event in our downtown.
And talk about ending the day with a bang thanks to Chris Keyes’ fireworks. They were, well, in a made up hyphonated word, un-be-freaking-levable! Small town fireworks tend to leave more snickers then ahhhs, but the display was so great that not one but two rousing choruses of O’ Canada were sung and screams of joy were heard up and down our waterfront. Then, to cap it all off, Freeflow busted out an encore set that literally had the pavilion jumping. O’ the people, O’ the energy, O’ Canada indeed!