August 21st, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 190821
Huckleberry Festival
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Castle Mountain photo
Huckleberry Festival 2018
David Selles
Pass Herald Reporter
The 24th annual Huckleberry Festival will take place at Castle Mountain the weekend of August 23-25.

Sales and Marketing Manager for Castle Mountain Resort, Cole Fawcett, says this weekend is a great way for people to experience the mountain in the summer months.

“The origins of the event can actually be traced back to our community association recognizing that there's very little that we have in the way of summer of activities. They spearheaded the event 24 years ago and it's just gradually transitioned with the fact that we now have a team that's on year-round to the point that we can organize it and they can provide a valuable assist. What sticks out in most people's minds is that it's an opportunity to reconnect with friends and family from the winter that might be regulars here at Castle and kind of enjoy some reconnecting and seeing chairlift rides and berry picking.”

Some of the main attractions at the festival is the live music, berry picking and chairlift rides but there are also many other different things to check out as well, including the vendors market.

Fawcett says that there are two other main parties in the planning of the event after the Castle Mountain Resort.
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“Castle Mountain Resort takes the lead on the organization but we have involvement from a couple other groups. There's a group called the Castle Mountain Community Association (CMCA) and they're a not-for-profit that benefits from the running of the event. A portion of the proceeds actually goes to them thanks to their volunteer efforts during the weekend. We have the Canadian Association of Disabled Skiers as well. They have a number of volunteers involved in the weekend too. They also benefit directly from the event as well.”

According to Fawcett, one of the main attractions to this festival is that it doesn’t have to be expensive for people attending.

“The great thing about the Huckleberry Festival is that anyone can come and you don't have to shell out a bunch of money to enjoy yourself. The reality with base-area activities is that they're free. All the live music that's going to occur is free. There is no charge to get through an entry gate. If someone wants to hike up the mountain and pick huckleberries on their own that's no problem.”

Fawcett added that some of the activities do have a cost such as the chairlift rides and any food or beverages people may want.
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Fawcett says there isn’t anything new this year except that better weather is expected.

“As far as events and activities there isn't anything super new this year. What is new I suppose is we're not under a cloud of smoke and haze like we were the last couple of years. Last year about four or five days prior to the festival we were still on an evacuation alert due to a forest fire that was relatively close to us. We didn't even know for sure if we would be able or allowed to have the festival. This year, the weather is great. There has been lots of moisture so far this summer and what that means is practically speaking it's going to be a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone.”

Fawcett says that the uniqueness of this festival will make it enjoyable.

“It's kind of equal parts folk music festival and outdoor festival so it's kind of interesting that way.”
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August 21st, 2019 ~ Vol. 89 No. 190821
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