Sylvan Lake’s birthday celebration is adding some new activities to the schedule.
The annual 1913 Days festival will take place this weekend, June 14-16, with the activities and highlights being held in various places around town.
“This year we changed it to be a historical and cultural event to tie in to the history and celebrate the settlers and the pioneers who started Sylvan Lake back in 1913 and so on,” said Kristen Shima, culture and tourism coordinator for the Town of Sylvan Lake.
Shima says this year “old fashioned” and history events have been incorporated into the schedule, as well as celebrating the First Nations.
The event kicks off on June 14 with an Indigenous Song and Dance Showcase at 7 p.m. in Centennial Park.
“We have teepees going up and many indigenous dancers that will be performing many different dance styles…” said Shima.
Saturday of 1913 Days will see old favourites like the Fire Department Pancake Breakfast, the Battle at the Beach street hockey tournament and the parade at 1 p.m.
They will be joined by new events such as the French Market, a Soap Box Derby and Old Fashion Penny Carnival.
“We wanted to highlight the pioneers that came to Sylvan Lake because they have a French history and also tying it to the stone castle here in Sylvan and honouring that history here,” explained Shima, adding the Town wanted to educate the public about the significance of French history in town.
The Old Fashioned Penny Carnival will have 25 cent games, with 75 cent ice cream at Big Moo from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The Soap Box Derby will run after the French Market from 4 to 7 p.m.
“That’s going to be a really fun event just for the kids to participate in to race down Centennial Street,” said Shima.
This year will also see a beer garden join the festivities, as well as cemetery tours from 2-4 p.m.
Shima says there will be a tour guide at the cemetery to talk about the history, the stories of the families who settled and the special areas within the cemetery to connect it to the community.
“I think overall it’s going to have a lot of depth with culture and history as well as a lot of fun … there’s just a lot of unique things happening in the entire weekend,” explained Shima.
She says the event is meant to celebrate the pioneers who first settled and “go back in time” to experience how Sylvan Lake came to be.
“…I think overall it will be an interesting experience to be a part of,” said Shima.
More information on 1913 Days can be found on sylvanlake.ca.