The Snow King’s Masque Parade is always a fun event to watch, but it is a whole different experience to participate in the festival.
Anyone and everyone is welcome to come out to the Snow King Playhouse, on 9th Avenue North, to make a lantern, mask, or puppet.
“One big difference here in the workshop will be the public space. People who are coming in to make a lantern or a simple mask will be in one spot, and on the other side will be people who are working on larger projects,” said Joyce deBoer, who has been volunteering with the festival since the beginning.
She, and several other volunteers, can be found on hand at the playhouse during their public hours to lend a hand.
All the materials required will be there for anyone to make a lantern (which will line the pathway along the Kicking Horse River), or a mask, which you can make to wear as a spectator, or to participate in the parade.
You can make whatever you like, whether it fits into the theme of Life is a Carnival or not, organizers only ask that if you are planning a big project and want to be part of the festival, that you commit to a dress rehearsal.
“If we know the main components that are there it helps. We can do it on the fly, but it’s stressful and you don’t want to miss anybody. So if we have a dress rehearsal, just so we know the simple things like who goes on after whom, then things will run a lot smoother,” said deBoer.
“It’s great anyway. I know it always turns out well, but it could be just a little bit better.”
DeBoer also recommends that participants are working together, like a group of friends or a family, that they consider making multiples.
“What is very effective in other festivals is multiples of the same. If you see three or more of anything the same, like a deck of cards, it’s way more powerful than one,” she said.
“Last year there were these very tall birds that came in. And what the magic of that was that it was a flock of them… It was magical.”
The birds were made by Golden Secondary School students with a backpack, a pair of skis and poles, some paper and glue.
“Those birds were really effective, and they only took 20 minutes each to make,” said deBoer. “So it goes to show that you don’t have to spend hours and hours here to make something special.”
The hours at the playhouse are every Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m., and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m.
Anyone who is working on a larger project, and needs time in the playhouse that does not fit into the public hours, than talk to deBoer about setting up another time to use the space.