Spirit of BC Week 2008 A Success Across BC

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From Victoria to Fort St. John and close to 100 communities in between, British Columbians celebrated Spirit of BC Week 2008 with more than 375 events province-wide. Each of these events was organized by volunteers who make up Spirit of BC community committees throughout the province.

"Hundreds of British Columbians volunteered thousands of hours to make Spirit of BC Week a tremendous success," said Tourism, Sport and the Arts Minister Stan Hagen. "These volunteers are dedicated individuals who worked together to build a sense of community pride and celebrate all that this province has to offer residents and visitors alike."

Five Spirit of BC signature events - in Richmond, Quesnel, Kimberley, Kelowna and Maple Ridge - showcased sport, physical activity, literacy, arts, culture, volunteerism and community spirit.

More than 100 people participated in Richmond's Spirit of BC Rocks which featured free curling lessons, skills testing, and a mini-bonspiel for both traditional and wheelchair curling. Richmond City Councillor Bill McNulty, Mayor Malcolm Brodie, and Richmond-Steveston MLA John Yap all had a go at Spirit of BC Rocks.

Quesnel hosted a reading by children's author David Bouchard, who also led discussions on promoting literacy in schools and the community. Throughout the day, more than 600 people joined in the literacy-oriented festivities.

At Kimberley's Spirit of BC Outdoor Winter Festival, more than 250 people came together to celebrate inclusion and culture with Paralympic sport demonstrations, entertainers and a First Nations friendship centre hockey challenge.

Visual artist Daphne Odjig received a Lifetime Achievement Award at Kelowna's first annual Spirit of BC Arts Showcase. More than 160 people attended the ceremony which recognized outstanding achievements and showcased visual, performance and digital art from Okanagan Valley artists.

In Maple Ridge, more than 600 people took part in the Spirit of Wood Festival which celebrated BC's 150th anniversary as a Crown colony. The event featured a chainsaw carving competition, pancake breakfast, and a showcase and sale of wood crafts and artwork.

Spirit of BC is a province-wide program that involves 95 Spirit of BC committees, representing over 200 communities across the province. These committees support local programs and help create opportunities in sport and recreation, arts, literacy, volunteerism, business and tourism. The program is supported by the Province of British Columbia. Visit SpiritofBC.com for more information.