Celebrations, Festivals, Events… Plenty of Ways to Party
Normally, the Similkameen is shakin’ with different events that vary as the seasons change, but a certain global pandemic put a halt to our celebrations…but they are starting to come back. Know that sporting events, music fests, wine accompanied celebrations, and even a salute to Similkameen pepper has returned once again.
- Check with the local Visitor Centres who have the latest information about events for their areas.
The following information is our historical events, we look forward to welcoming them back over time.
Top 10 Similkameen Events
- Multiple Winery-held dinners and events throughout the Summer
- Run the Fat Dog 120 or the Ultra520K Canada endurance races
- Taste our Valley at the annual harvest celebration of the same name each autumn
- Find yourself dancing in the streets at the annual Princeton Traditional Music Festival
- Enjoy the warmth of our wineries one weekend each December at the annual Holiday Open Houses
- Reconnect with nature each spring at the annual Meadowlark Festival
- Tempt your taste buds at the Similkameen Sizzle, a celebration of the Similkameen pepper
- Light up the Night at our celebration of winter and annual Santa Claus Parade
- Watch bronco bucks and bull riding cowboys show off their skills at the Chopaka or Elks Rodeo, or at Princeton’s Stan Thompson Memorial Rodeo
- Check out the tasting menu at The Cider House if you’re passing through on the weekend. There are plenty of ways to explore wine, cider and food pairings in the Similkameen Valley.
Fall Harvest Celebrations
If you haven’t gotten the idea yet, the fall harvest is kind of a big deal around these parts. As such, the locals know how to throw quite the fall celebrations! Some of the staples include getting spicy at the Similkameen Sizzle, a Canadian celebration dedicated to the pepper harvest, and check out events at the Old Grist Mill and Gardens.
Winter Holiday Events
Yes, winter does get a little chilly. We don’t necessarily think you should huddle inside, but if you’re not a fan of the cold, make sure you’re getting out to check out the annual Winery Open Houses held each December in concert with the annual Light up the Night parade. Also, we have junior hockey! Cheer on the Princeton Posse in an adrenaline-filled night of family fun!
You can tell spring is in the air when you can smell the scent of the new blossoms mixed with the musk of bulls and the aroma of freshly kicked up dirt. Spring is rodeo season in the Similkameen. Kicking things off right is the Chopaka Rodeo on Easter, followed by Elk’s Rodeo in Keremeos and Princeton’s Stan Thompson Memorial Rodeo.
If the excitement of a rodeo isn’t your thing, slow it down a bit with the Meadowlark Festival. The Meadowlark might not have the adrenaline-pumping excitement of a rodeo but it is a divine celebration of nature and wildlife that is sure to pique your interest.
Oh! We can’t forget to mention that spring is the start of the wine season, which is a reason to celebrate unto itself. Sip your way through the valley and be among the first tasters of the Similkameen’s terroir. Winemakers dinners, vertical tastings in a cave, roaming expansive vineyards – a new wine season is always a time to behold.
Summer Food and Festivals
A Similkameen summer…there are few places in this province that can match it.
If you’re into fitness, why not sign up for the Fat Dog 120, or the Ultra520K Canada? If you don’t want to race but are still looking to be active, grab your partner and your best two-stepping shoes and check out Princeton’s Traditional Music Fest in August. After grooving to songs and dancing the night away, stick around for the Princeton Agricultural Fair!
Slide down to Keremeos, where there’s a summer concert series at the Old Grist Mill and Gardens. Bring your blanket and the family for a lovely serenade under the stars on select dates in July and August.
There are always new and special events popping up in the Similkameen, so be sure to check the latest event listings on this page or pop into/call Visitor Centres in Princeton, Hedley and Keremeos for the latest information on our community events.