Plans for the 91st edition of the Williams Lake Stampede are proceeding smoothly, Stampede president Tim Rolph told city council during its regular meeting Tuesday.
This year’s Stampede takes place June 29 to July 2.
“We’d like to thank the city and especially the staff for continued assistance in helping us out in all the ways that they do,” Rolph said, noting the association was especially pleased to be able to assist the city and Pioneer Log Homes in the construction and erection of the new archway at the Stampede Grounds entrance last summer.
The Stampede Queen contest will take place again as usual, with former Stampede princess Davana Mahon heading up the committee.
Mahon, along with Amanda Fuller and a small committee, is hoping to have applications ready by the end of February.
“Applications will close mid-April and similar to last year will see a condensed competition wrap up in early June,” Rolph said.
Changes to the competition have been made to make it more accessible to young women who might be working, attending post secondary school, involved in other sports or volunteer experiences.
“We believe it is our job to encourage these young women to be an active part of our community, and reducing the time commitment of this program is just one way to do that,” Rolph said, reading from a statement prepared by Fuller who was unable to attend the council meeting.
The Stampede campground will open on April 14 — the Easter long weekend.
“As for the rodeo we are working diligently to have another really exciting weekend,” Rolph said. “We are proud of the Cariboo and Williams Lake and what we can bring to it and the fact that it’s Canada’s 150th birthday so we will be trying to tie that in.”
The Stampede Grounds boast a great facility that can be used in a number of different ways outside of equestrian and western type of events, he added.
“We were lucky last year to be able to work with city council to host a Chinese delegation” he said. “It was a very successful and fun event.”