With the addition of Peach bin races, there are going to be thrills and chills to open the 67th annual Peach Festival on Aug. 6.
Picture the scene: 20 wildly decorated peach bins, each with a team of five, lined up on Main Street at noon, everyone eager to set the benchmark record for racing down the 100 block and into Okanagan Lake Park.
“They are actually apple bins, but we are going to pretend,” joked Kerri Milton, executive director of the Downtown Penticton Association, which is sponsoring the event.
“A business or individual can sponsor a bin and all proceeds go to charity.
“Then it is up to the business or the individual to decorate their bin, however they want, but no motorized vehicles allowed.”
Milton said she has obtained 20 bins from local farmers for the inaugural races, so when those have all found sponsors, that’s the limit.
“We have had a lot of phone calls and a lot of interest,” said Milton.
“It is looking really good. As of Friday, we had a few (sponsorships) come through already.”
All the bins will be on display from 5 to 9 p.m. at Backstreet is Peachy, a pre-Peachfest party on Aug. 5 on, naturally enough, Backstreet Boulevard.
“It’s anything peach-related, so we have market vendors and merchants from downtown doing peach food and peach drinks.
“The Cannery is doing a peach beer and Chris from Burger 55 is doing some sort of a peach burger,” said Milton.
All the bins will be on display outside Guerard’s Furniture, where visitors can check them out and bet on who they think the winner will be.
All proceeds generated by the betting and $50 entry fees will go to the charity chosen by the winning team. The grand prize is free parade entry for the Peachfest Grand Parade on Aug. 9.
Milton expects the course to be dry and fast right down the centre of Main Street, with perhaps a few surprises.
“The best part is we do have a corner for them to make to get into Okanagan Lake Park … for fun,” she said, betraying just a trace of an evil laugh.
Application forms to take part in the race are available through the DPA’s website at downtownpenticton.org.