West Shore won’t see a repeat of last year’s free music festival on B.C. Day.
Capital Festival producer John Selkirk, organizer of the event that attracted about 2,000 people to Goudy Field at City Centre Park last year, had planned to make it an annual tradition, but the pieces haven’t come together this year.
It wasn’t for lack of sponsorship. Westhills, the title sponsor for last year’s festival, was interested in continuing the event, said Rohan Rupf, marketing director for KeyCorp Consulting, the lead consultant for Westhills.
“A proposal never made it to the table,” Rupf said. “We expressed interest in supporting it, and we’re still open to sponsoring arts events as they come to us.”
B.C. Day festivities on the West Shore were an extension of another free music event Selkirk has organized since 2009 at St. Ann’s Academy. Selkirk ran into trouble securing the Victoria venue this year after he missed a deadline to apply for funding from the Provincial Capital Commission.
Selkirk announced in April the Victoria event was cancelled, but said the West Shore spinoff would continue – he referred to his relationship with Langford and business sponsors as “golden.” But in June the PCC and Selkirk came to an agreement to continue the event at St. Ann’s event and talk of keeping the second West Shore venue dried up.
Selkirk said he’s planning a Langford event Aug. 27 to correspond with the SportAssist charity golf tournament the previous day. He’s also hoping to hold an event when the new bowling centre and ice arena opens at City Centre Park this fall.
As for this long weekend, Selkirk is hoping West Shore folks will make the drive to Victoria for free music.
“The West Shore venue is something to reconsider in the future … maybe next year,” Selkirk said.
Some of the emerging West Shore musicians who performed at the B.C. Day festival in Langford last year will return to play in Victoria, including Belmont secondary alumni Karly Summers.
St. Ann’s will feature three stages featuring a variety of musical acts and performing artists such as dancers and acrobats. There will also be dance workshops for adults and kids.
The Capital Festival B.C. Day Celebrations at St. Ann’s Academy, 835 Humboldt St., is Aug. 1 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For details see www.capitalfestival.com.