Trapped in Garibaldi Highlands during the GranFondo on Saturday (Sept. 8)?
May as well check out the first-ever Fondo Fan Zone in the Garibaldi Village parking lot from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on the day of the race. Even if you don’t live in the Highlands, there will be activities and fun to attract interest from all over Squamish.
The Lions Club will be satisfying locals’ appetites with a pancake breakfast from 8 to 11 a.m. and several other local businesses will be keeping people busy. Kevin Thomson, the co-founder of the GranFondo Whistler, said he’s thrilled with the creation of the Fondo Fan Zone and that it’s proof that Squamish is embracing the event.
“The Fondo Fan Zone is definitely one of the coolest new things for this year,” he said. “It’s been a groundswell from the community for something like this and was really an initiative from local people who thought, ‘If we’re not able to cross the highway, let’s have some fun.’ It’s something we’re fully supportive of and really wasn’t anything we created.”
Other things to do at the Fondo Fan Zone include: Rock your iPhone Camera with local iPhone expert Brian Noppe, a jam session with the Squamish Academy of Music, the Squamish Arts Council and Visuals showcase and the chance to paint some TOMS with Fetish for Shoes. There will also be a marketplace and a community cheer party for all the riders passing by.
Activities for kids of all ages include a noisemaker creation booth and a sidewalk chalk graffiti competition. The Brackendale Fall Fair will also have a strong presence at the fan zone, with an information booth and full details on the event also taking place on Saturday.
“I can’t wait to see the Fondo Fan Zone,” Thomson added. “What better way to celebrate an event than to build a whole cheer station in a community to celebrate?”
The Fondo Fan Zone will also be the starting point of the 55-kilometre Medio race, which leaves from the Garibaldi Village Mall parking lot at 9:30 a.m. Thomson said he expects numbers to be about the same as last year and the best place to watch the mass start is at the fan zone.
For more information on the race, visit www.rbcgranfondowhistler.com.