Motivated to think outside the box, members of a local organization that produces events for the LGBTQ2+ community are opening a popular Comox Valley swimming spot to the public for three days in July.
Queer Culture managing directors Jeff Stickler and Kitty Pitt are opening up Stotan Falls to the public July 5, 6 and 7, from dawn to dusk for swimming and recreation, with free admission.
The popular swimming spot located off the Duncan Bay Main logging road is owned by 3L Developments and has been closed to public use.
Stickler said he knew the community “was hungry to use the area, and we thought ‘what if we asked (3L) if we could use it, and try to see what happens?’ ”
He added everyone is welcome to the event, and on Sunday, July 7 at 2:30 p.m., Match Eatery & Public House will be catering hamburgers and hot dogs, with proceeds going to the Langley Parnell Bursary.
The bursary is for students 25 years of age or younger. In order for students to apply for the bursary, they must be enrolled in a post-secondary institution; be part of or allied in the queer community; provide a letter of support from a community leader (teacher, mentor); a copy of a school acceptance letter and a letter explaining how they intend on changing the world.
Two years ago, Queer Culture collected $2,100 for the scholarship; last year that amount topped $4,000.
Stickler confirmed Queer Culture has liability insurance and will have port-a-potties and garbage collection on site.
He said while he can’t confirm whether this the event will become an annual one, Stickler said one their goals is to do the best they can to provide entertaining events that people would like to attend throughout the Valley.
In addition to the Stotan Falls event, Queer Culture is also hosting its annual summer weekend Aug. 23-25, which includes a party at Wayward Distillation House, a drag race at Simms Millennium Park and a brunch at 40 Knots Winery.
3L Developments did not respond to a request for comment.