Shrine Parade kicks off Children’s Festival Saturday

Starting off with a Shrine parade and featuring about a dozen Shrine clowns the annual Children’s Festival promises to be a special treat.

Starting off with a full Shrine parade and featuring about a dozen Shrine clowns the annual Children’s Festival Saturday, May 28 promises to be an extra special treat.

The Shrine Parade, featuring floats, little Shrine cars. scooters, clowns, local dignitaries, and various community floats and entries starts at 10 a.m.

The route will be down Third Avenue from the Comer Street mustering station, turning left on Oliver Street; left again on Eighth Avenue, then back along Borland Street to Seventh Avenue and the back of the Cariboo Memorial Complex.

The Children’s Festival takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Boitanio Park.

“People can join the fun and follow the Children’s Festival float (last one) into Boitanio Park for the Children’s Festival,” says Dawn Wall, child care consultant with the Child Care Resource and Referral Centre which is hosting the festival with help from the Women’s Contact Society, local arts and community groups and the Shriners.

Including guests, a delegation of more than 300 Shriners are in Williams Lake this weekend for the BC-Yukon Spring Ceremonial 2016 convention.

About a dozen Shrine clowns will be entertaining at the Chilren’s Festival.

The Shriners have also made it possible for the festival to present  the Barefoot Caravan five-piece band from the Okanagan Valley performing indigenous music from around the world in various languages and with various instruments.

“It will be a really big festival this year,” Wall says.

There will be 37 booths including activities such as working with clay, painting, bubble blowing, face painting, big bouncy toys, Shrine clowns, plus local and visiting entertainers.

Wall says local firefighters will be there with their dunk tank.

And RCMP officers will also be there to play fun soccer games with the children.

There will also be displays on such things water conservation, waste management and garden composting.

“All of the activities are free,” Wall says. “The only thing people have to pay for is the food, but we have also asked the food vendors to keep their rates as low as possible.”

She says there will be five food vendors on site.

“This is a family festival and we want everyone to be able to participate in everything.”