Boston Bar May Day celebration marks 85th year

Residents are gearing up for annual community festival

Boston Bar is home to the second longest running May Day celebration in B.C.

The annual event has become a community tradition for 85 years, reuniting residents with old friends and neighbourhoods.

“To some it’s everything,” said event organizer Shirley Crow. “We’re trying to keep it alive.  For us to lose it would be so sad. It’s all about community building.”

About 20 volunteers have been working since February to prepare for this year’s event on Saturday. Festivities include the parade, traditional May Pole dance performed by students at Boston Bar Elementary Secondary School, crowning of May Queen Justice Watson, community spirit awards presented by the Boston Bar/North Bend Enhancement Society, tug-of-war, silent auction, kids activities, beer garden, food and vendors. There will also be a new heritage tent, featuring numerous artifacts from the museum.

The parade leaves Boston Bar Elementary Secondary School at 10 a.m. on route to Memorial Park via Old Boston Bar Road, Highway 1 and Chaumox Road. Several awards will be handed out including best decorated car or truck, best decorated float, best costume, best marching group, best bike, and best whatever. This year organizers have also added an equestrian category.

Guitarist, vocalist, harmonicist and kazooist Mat Duffus will entertain the crowd throughout the day in Memorial Park with wide variety of songs.

The evening stage lineup features a Las Vegas-style magic show with Steven and Cassandra Best, as well as a performance by singer Lou Morocco who specializes in the music of artists such as Neil Diamond, Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra. Tickets are $30 at the door for adults and $25. The show starts at 8 p.m., with doors opening at 7 p.m.