From left to right: Marilyn Kapchinsky, Veena Sachdev, Tarsem Dhak and Asha Sharma dress in Regency Period clothing to be counted towards the Guinness Book of Records count at the Jane Austen Festival on Saturday at Port Alberni. KARLY BLATS PHOTO

Jane Austen Fest draws nearly 300 to Port Alberni

Numbers weren’t enough to set Regency world record

Venues at Port Alberni were transformed into the Regency era Saturday as hundreds of people congregated to celebrate the Jane Austen Festival.

It wasn’t, however, a record-breaking scene. Organizers from the Centennial Belles were hoping to set a Guinness World Record for the most people gathered in Regency costume. It was their second attempt in as many years.

“We didn’t set the record, but we did beat last year’s numbers,” organizer Tricia Knight announced to the gathering inside Glenwood Centre once the official count was complete. The number to beat was 409 people, and Port Alberni boasted 286.

The count was part of a three-day Jane Austen Festival that included country dancing on Friday night, a promenade on Centennial Pier and afternoon tea at the Starboard Grill and Boom Town Café, readings of Austen’s and other authors’ Regency-inspired writings at Char’s Landing, a formal ball at the United Church on Saturday evening and a Regency picnic at Rogers Creek Park on Sunday afternoon.

karly.blats@albernivalleynews.com