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LETTER TO EDITOR: Quesnel’s Billy Barker Days 2023 festival at risk of cancellation

Numerous volunteer positions need to be filled by Nov. 17
(Rebecca Dyok photo — Quesnel Observer)


The Quesnel Billy Barker Days Society has been actively putting on a free festival on the third weekend in July for 46 years, which was consecutive until 2017 with forest fire danger and then, of course, two years missed due to COVID.

We managed to provide most of our usual events this past July (the 46th) with the help of a few hard-working, long-time volunteer members and extra helpers for the actual weekend. However, this will not continue without changes made.

A number of our long-time and hard-working members have decided to step away after many years of service. Accordingly, we have many gaps in our directorships and even executive positions that need to be filled by our annual meeting occurring Thursday, Nov. 17.

If a sufficient number of old and new members do not commit to providing the time needed to attend society meetings from January to June of 2023, then the few long-standing current members/directors have no choice but to cancel proceeding on a 2023 Festival. By January, we usually will have paid deposits to headlining bands from outside Quesnel, have circulated a list of corporate sponsors with which to meet and collect in-kind and cash funding, and have participants committed to all our key directorships from corporate fundraising to stage director to parks supervisor and parade manager, etc.

We have a wonderful group of local businesses who annually provide money or products or services to the society’s festival, so funding is not the main concern, but the lack of people willing to help definitely is.

If there is a possibility you can spend a few hours monthly doing the work involved in any one directorship as well as actively attending the four days of festival then now is the time to bring your names and information forward to us.

If not, then a resolution will probably be brought forward at an upcoming meeting to start the process of cancelling our 2023 festival while waiting for more active participation from the Quesnel area residents, which could result in hosting a festival again in 2024.

If interested in any of the above, contact any society directors you may already know, or leave a message at our office telephone of 250-992-1234 or by email to or text myself at 250-316-6298 or email This information collected will be part of the discussion at our November session.

Maureen Murray,

Souvenir Director and Past President

Quesnel Billy Barker Days Society