While the image of jeans, suspenders and plaid wool shirts will always scream lumberjack, todays competitive logger sports athletes are a new breed. Theyre fast, fit, and compete in the latest high performance gear. A lot of the top athletes are heavily sponsored, and wear as many logos as a Tour de France racer.
And while the skills may seem fringe log rolling, axe throwing, hand bucking, tree climbing, etc. theres no question how much skill it takes to compete at this level.
The 49 th annual Squamish Days Logger Sports weekend gets underway today (Thursday, Aug. 3) and runs through Sunday, with a field of international competitors facing off in six Canadian and five world championship events. While all eyes will be on the pros, there are also novice and intermediate categories.
Thursday, Aug. 3
The Squamish Days opens with an outdoor performance at Eagle Eye Theatre, featuring Edith Wallace and The Shirleys, along with Nadine McNeil and Whistlers own Ali Milner. The doors open at 7 p.m., and there will be free appetizers and a cash bar.
Friday, Aug. 4
From 3 to 6 p.m. the top chainsaw carvers will be competing to see who can carve the best chair. Judging and auctioning of the chairs takes place at 5:30 p.m., with proceeds going to Big Brothers/Big Sisters.
Friday also hosts the annual bed race, with teams of five (four pushers and one rider) running a bed on wheels through a two-block course covered with obstacles and challenges. Always a crowd favourite, and anyone can enter. The race starts at 7 p.m. on Cleveland Avenue.
Saturday, Aug. 5
The competition gets underway with the Childrens Sport day at 9:30 a.m. at Stan Clarke Park in downtown Squamish. There will be races for kids of all ages, as well as a handicapped events and a bicycle decoration contest.
The Novice and Intermediate Loggers Sports competitions get underway at 1:30 p.m. at Al McIntosh Loggers Sports Grounds, with free admission for everybody. The range of competitions is the same as for the pro loggers.
Saturday also features the Squamish Classics ShownShine for classic and custom cars from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Government Road, the Squamish Days Giant Bingo at the Royal Canadian Legion at 6:45 p.m., and the Squamish Days Loggers Stomp at 9 p.m., Brennan Park Recreation Centre. Tickets are $10 in advance.
Sunday, Aug. 6
The day begins with the Squamish Days Elks Loggers Breakfast in Mackenzie Plaza from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Next up is the annual Squamish Days 10 km run, which starts and finishes at Howe Sound Secondary. Registration gets underway at 6:30 a.m. and the race starts at 8:30 a.m.
The Squamish Days Festival Parade starts at 11 a.m. in downtown Squamish, leading up to the main event:
The World Class Open Loggers Sports Show starts at 1:30 a.m. at Al McIntosh Logggers Sports Grounds. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children. The events are the same as the day before, with the speed and level of challenge ratcheted up a notch.
Events include Tree Climbing, Tree Topping, Birling, the Chokermans Race, Axe Throwing, the Underhand Chop, the Butcher Block Chop, the Obstacle Pole Chop, the Springboard Chop, Hand Bucking, Speed Bucking.
For more information, and a detailed explanation of events, visit www.squamishdays.org.