Council ponder buskers at new town square

Day promotes idea of having a busker licence for Renfrew Town Square with council table seemingly supportive

The idea and prospect of buskers performing at the new Renfrew Town Square could well become a reality sooner rather than later.

If that comes about, Lake Cowichan will have Coun. Bob Day to thank.

Day instigated the idea to the council table at last week’s Finance and Administration Committee meeting at the town hall, seeking to provide as much regular colour and entertainment possible for the town square when it eventually opens next month.

The move came after a discussion was prompted by Day regarding a Public Use Facility Policy for the Renfrew Town Square.

“This is a different facility from the ones we currently hold,” said Day. “It is designed for small events without taking up parking space. I’m wondering if we’ll need to coincide for allowances with things like buskers. There could be auditions, fees, things like that to go along with it and we could also look at a maximum amount of vendors per day.”

But according to town staff, there may not be that much work needed to do to allow Day’s vision to come to fruition with a similar policy already in place.

“We do have a policy for groups such as buskers and we could maybe add to that policy,” said chief administrator Joe Fernandez.

Day claimed that buskers are a regularity in the City of Duncan.

“I believe the buskers in Duncan are charged $100 a year to perform regularly and they are appearing everywhere now,” he said. “I think we should do some investigation into their policy.”

Coun. Frank Hornbrook also suggested the town could look at the City of Victoria’s policy for buskers also, with buskers a regular site to be seen along the waterfront areas of the province’s capital.

But Day thinks Lake Cowichan’s version would need to be unique, or certainly different from that of Victoria’s.

“We are not Victoria either,” he said. “Charging a fee for this would get us regular local people out performing rather than just those people passing through town at different times throughout the year. I know a couple of people already who are chomping at the bit to get going on this.”

The rest of the council table also seemed supportive in the early stages of this particular discussion and Fernandez ended the conversation by confirming October 31 as a definite proposed and wanted date for the grand opening of the Renfrew Town Square.