skippers

The Black Widow Rope Spinners are joined by other teams from across North America for a performance each day at this year’s Penticton Peach Festival.

Upwards of 80,000 people are believed to have enjoyed at least one part of the 72nd annual Penticton Peach Festival, which came to a close Sunday night, says the president of the organizing society.

“It’s really a ballpark number,” cautioned Don Kendall, but it’s definitely feasible.

The figure includes the approximately 8,000 people who jammed Okanagan Lake Park for nightly concerts by the likes of Emerson Drive and Crash Test Dummies, plus an estimated 20,000 people who watched the Peters Bros Grand Parade.

Then there were the peripheral events, such as a square-dancing competition and sandcastle building contest, plus regular entertainment acts like a hypnotist, motocross riders, dancers and musicians.

It all added up to a lot of free fun for families.

“How many big events like that can you go to when your kids feel safe and you want them to be there?” said Kendall, who has been president for 10 Peachfests now.

The only hitch he noticed was a sound issue for the Crash Test Dummies show – “if it had been any other band, they would have walked off after the first or second song” – for which the contracted production company was responsible.

Kendall and the volunteer board of 17 directors will celebrate at a volunteer appreciation event today, then get to work planning the 2020 festival.

Approximately 200 people gave their time to the 2019 edition, and Kendall said people can show their appreciation by supporting sponsors: “We couldn’t do it without them.”