BERWICK – Despite the rainy forecast Feb. 10, Berwick’s Winter Carnival went ahead as planned, with plenty of people checking out the activities despite the lack of snow.
A free skate, snow golf, and sleigh rides were among the events that held their own through the steady rain and cold winds, and event organizer Debbie Elliott was happy to see people show up to the much-anticipated event.
“Well we’ve got no snow, so obviously that’s a challenge,” she said.
“But we had 200 last night for the bonfire and fireworks, 40 people for the Glow Walk. Even today, people came and were interested.”
Mayor Don Clarke was on hand with some buddies to have a go at snow golf, where they whacked a golf ball around the baseball field into various holes.
“We weren’t sure of the holes or the equipment, but it worked out quite well. Snow would have been better, but we worked through the conditions,” he said.
While some of the day's activities, like the Valley Junior A Wildcats game, the free skate, and Snowman Toss were indoors, the majority were slated for the outdoors regardless of weather conditions.
Elliott says she and the Recreation Department decided on this because "it's still all about having fun."
“The temptation is to plan indoor activities, but a winter carnival denotes outdoor activities," she said.
"That’s what we were trying to do, even with no snow."
Weather not a problem for Dominican trip fundraiser
Abby Disley was one among several students participating in a free-will offering hotdog fundraiser to raise money for their upcoming March Break trip to the Dominican Republic, where the group of 10 students will be building a house for a family in need.
The trip is not affiliated with the school, but the students are all from West Kings, and know each other, something Disley said makes the trip even more exciting. visit orphanages and work in schools
Bilynda and Hoyles Whiting were also helping out at the fundraiser, along with Disley's dad, Michael. Their son, Grant, will be on the trip. They said they’d sold around 120 hotdogs by 1:30 p.m., despite the rain.
Bilynda Whiting said she's looking forward to the students also visit orphanages and working in schools, allowing them to experience a different culture and give back.
“They'll be totally immersed in that community. It’ll be great for them to see how people live in other parts of the world," she said.
Disley and the other students are grateful for the continued support they've received from Berwick and surrounding communities over the year they've spent fundraising.
The trip is finally on the horizon, and she couldn't be more excited.
“It’s a unique experience, and we’ll probably never get the opportunity to have this experience again,” she said.
“Getting to help out another family and experience their culture is something we’re all really excited about."
Indoor activities still a hit
Later on in the evening, the Valley Junior A Wildcats hit the ice, with hundreds of fans watching from the stands.
Among the crowd was one of their biggest fans, Abel Stewart, 4, who goes to as many Wildcats games as he can.
His mother, Ami, said he knows almost every player and cheers as loud as he can each game.
Holding his Valentine's Day flower, he described why he loves the team so much.
"My favourite player is Matt, #7," he said, of Wildcats player Matt Warner.
"They're really awesome and I love them."