Despite organizer dispute, Heritage Days 2017 still being planned

By Spencer Sterritt
March 17, 2017 - 1:17pm
2016 Heritage Days, which was the last event hosted and organized by Morgan Carey and Real Estate Webmasters.
2016 Heritage Days, which was the last event hosted and organized by Morgan Carey and Real Estate Webmasters. Morgan Carey/Facebook

NANAIMO — The City says Nanaimo Heritage Days will carry on after the event appeared in doubt following a heated post online from a former organizer.

In an electric Facebook post, previous organizer Morgan Carey of Real Estate Webmasters said he wouldn't put on the event this year due to a lack of community support. He also referenced an unwillingness to have his staff involved in the “toxic environment...due to our ridiculous city council and city management.”

“I was asked to help with it and I ended up getting it dropped in my lap. I don't have the time and I certainly don't have the $50,000 extra just laying around to pay for it by myself,” he told NanaimoNewsNOW.

Carey said while he loved seeing happy families enjoy the activities downtown the last two years, overall he felt his efforts were unappreciated.

However, city councillor Jerry Hong said Heritage Days 2017 is still on track for the May long weekend.

“A group of community minded people have stepped forward and said 'Yes, we would be involved.'”

At this point, Hong said the new group hopes to have their paperwork in order by the end of March to apply for downtown event funding from the City.

Regarding Carey's comments against the City, Hong said he understood and respected everyone's opinion but believed most residents still supported their council.

Heritage Days was formed in 2015 to replace the Empire Days celebration, which was cancelled after city council withdrew their funding over the name “Empire,” which was considered offensive to minority groups.

Heritage Days is held over the May long weekend and typically features a parade and fireworks.

 

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