Eddie Lehn makes his way around a barrel in the barrel race during the motorcycle games at the 23 Annual Salmon Arm Summer Stomp held in Silver Creek.

Summer Stomp’s long road to Sicamous

Annual rally rolls from private bush party to municipal event.

  • Nov. 23, 2016 2:00 p.m.

The Sicamous Stomp & Burnout has quite a history for being only 27.

What started as a private party in the ‘80s has since turned into a roaring rally, complete with burnouts, live music and camping.

The event was originally in Salmon Arm, and has moved a to a few different locations, from Tappen to Silver Creek and finally to Sicamous in 2013, said president Steve Hammer.

Hammer gave an account of the Stomp’s small beginnings, before his involvement in 1998.

“Previously to my getting involved, the Stomp didn’t even have its own bank account,” he said.

One night, in 1988, 200 people gathered on a private property for a birthday party. The birthday-person was a Stomp founding member. After the success of the party, Hammer said the person suggested they have a party every year. So it was decided to create the Summer Stomp in Salmon Arm for the following year.

The original six Stomp committee members were: Howard and Leslie Halett, Larry Barker, Helen Barker, Mike Smith and Darcy MacKintosh.

After expanding for a few years, said Hammer, the Stomp found another home in Silver Creek, which, in its largest year, saw around 2,750 people attend.

After moving from private locations, the event eventually found a home in Silver Creek Community Park.

Trailers were placed in the park, and “people would just show up,” Hammer said, in the days before liquor licensing.

What started as a single-day event during a long weekend in July slowly developed into a three-day event.

In 2011, the Stomp took a breather.

The Agricultural Land Commission denied the request to hold the event on four parcels of land in Silver Creek that were in the Agricultural Land Reserve.

Although organizers had identified another potential site that wasn’t in the ALR, time ran out for getting plans in place.

When the Stomp took a year off, Sturgis North held a controversial weekend event, leaving unpaid debt in its wake.

In 2012, the Stomp had its own issues with the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, as it did not abide by an agreement with the CSRD stating they would have the music turned off by midnight.

Finally, in 2013, the Stomp found its current home in Sicamous as the Summer Stomp & Burnout.

The Sicamous and District Chamber of Commerce and the Stomp committee heard mostly positive feedback at their public forum.

About 30 people attended a recent town hall meeting to update themselves on the event.

“It was 100 per cent positive feedback from the community,” said Hammer. “The community is very accepting and embracing the event with open arms.”

Chamber executive director Michelle Wolff said the biggest concern that arose was access to Main Street. Main Street was closed to regular traffic Friday and Saturday to accommodate the carnival-style Burnout event. Traffic was restricted to bikes, emergency vehicles and necessary traffic for businesses.

Each year, Main Street is closed to accommodate the burnout, stunt riding and more family-friendly events.

The District of Sicamous is currently conducting an online survey for feedback about the Stomp.

 

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