Families and athletes from across the province will descend on Nanaimo between July 17- 20 for the 2014 B.C. Summer Games.
It will be a boon for sports fans as there will be a wealth of sporting events to check out. A majority of events will take place in the Nanaimo area, with some box lacrosse taking place at Parksville and towed water sport events, like water skiing, at Quamichan Lake near Duncan.
All venues are open to the public, all events are free of charge and Jeff Lott, Nanaimo 2014 Games president, said all the venues are in good shape. While events can be viewed at places like Serauxmen Stadium, residents in the Westwood Lake area will be able to pull out their lawn chairs and watch the triathlon.
“The running area is along the trail that goes along Westwood Lake and the triathlon is actually going out into the neighbourhood, which is just a short distance down the hill and off to the left, so that’s going to be pretty exciting for having a front-row seat,” Lott said.
Residents will be informed about the days the triathlon takes place and any traffic changes that will occur.
“Traffic will be somewhat restricted, but we’ll try to minimize that to the best of our ability [and] we’ll give people lots of notice,” Lott said.
Long Lake will also be a good place to watch the competition, as canoeing and kayaking will be amongst the events taking place there.
“There’s one group that is going to be launching its boats at the Long Lake Inn from the dock and the local rowing club has its docks on the other side of the lake, so that’s going to be a hectic place and a great place to go and watch some activities,” said Lott.
In addition, there will be Paralympic and Special Olympic events as well, according to Barry Sparkes, the games’ director for sport.
“[Special Olympic events] will be blended right in with the swimming and the same with the track-and-field, it includes Special Olympics there as well,” Sparkes said, adding that Paralympic events will include equestrian and swimming.
Sparkes recommends checking out events as the best in B.C. will be in town for the games.
“These are almost the elite junior athletes in the province,” he said. “It’s part of the development process, the summer games … they’re all young people between the ages of 12 and 17. They’ve been selected by their zones within their sports and there’s some very, very good competition in all those sports and age levels.”
For more information, including schedules of events, please visit www.bcgames.org.