Some in the Cowichan Lake community are not convinced, but in spite of the good questions they have raised, we think that moving Sunfest to the area can be a positive thing.
We hope people can get on board and realize some of the opportunities that Sunfest presents to the community.
Opponents have cited everything from worries about fire, policing, and garbage, to noise and traffic. There is merit to some of the concerns, and we think that, as Youbou/Meade Creek area director Klaus Kuhn has said that there will doubtless be some growing pains in its first year at the Laketown Ranch site.
No matter how much troubleshooting the owners do beforehand, and it’s important to remember that many of the bumps in the Sunfest road have already been smoothed out while it’s been at other sites, there are bound to be some things that have not been anticipated and will have to be dealt with on the fly.
We hope that people can be patient through what will be an adjustment period, because aside from being a fun weekend that thousands of people look forward to every year — and we bet that some of those folks are from the Cowichan Lake area — there is an economic opportunity in this.
Not only is this a chance for people to offer goods and services to the festival-goers during the event itself — and don’t underestimate how much food and entertainment these thousands of people will want — but it’s a chance to put the community on the map for a whole lot of people who’ve never heard of Cowichan Lake and its surrounding town and villages, let alone been there.
If the community can make a good impression, it’s possible to lure some of these folks back at other times of the year, bolstering the local tourism economy significantly.
We think that the majority of people will welcome the festival, and we believe that the festival organizers will do everything they can to help make the event a good experience not just for their music-loving guests, but for the community, too.
The Cowichan Lake area can use some economic help, as times have been tough. The community should seize this opportunity.