B.C.’s wildfire state of emergency has resulted in the cancellation of the Quesnel Skyfest, a major and growing air show in the Cariboo region of the province. The provincial government has designated the Quesnel Airport as a fire support base for the next 30 days and that overlaps with the show, which was to be held on the August long weekend. “This airport designation and level of fire attack activity will render it all but impossible to conduct an airshow simultaneously with fire suppression activities,” said Jerry van Halderen, president of the Quesnel Skyfest Society.
Quesnel hosts one of the largest air shows in B.C. every other year and there were big plans for this year’s show to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. “This decision is a heavy one to make at this point in time, given the thousands of volunteer hours already put into making this year’s show one of the biggest and best thus far,” said van Halderen. The society is considering its next move, including the possibility of staging the show in 2018. It will announce a decision shortly.