Hope Brigade Days is the annual end of summer party honouring the community’s fur trading history.
In 1848, Hudson’s Bay Company decided to expand and strengthen their communications links between the coastal areas and the interior of British Columbia. Fort Hope was established at the foothills of the Cascade mountains, at the point where the Coquihalla River runs into the Fraser River. It would be 80 years before Fort Hope was incorporated to become the Village of Hope and close to another 40 years to graduate to the Town of Hope. Finally, in 1993, the town amalgamated with outlying areas to become the District of Hope.
Local service station owner Ken James first came up with the idea for Hope Brigade Days, in recognition of the close of the town’s busy summer season. More than 40 years later, this small town festival remains a favourite of locals and visitors alike.
The 45th annual Hope Brigade Days celebration runs Sept.6-8, 2013. The Sixth Avenue Park motorsports events are a big draw for the weekend, with competitors taking part in mini-stock races, 4X4 races, and demolition derbies. Hope Motorsports Group, a non-profit organization, uses the proceeds from entry fees to help support local charities including Hope Crime Prevention Society and Hope Search and Rescue.
Friday night kicks off the weekend with the official opening ceremonies, live entertainment and a fireworks display. There’s lots to check out this year, with a parade, sheepdog trials, and two performances by the RCMP Musical Ride also planned.