Corn on the cob, cotton candy and a Ferris wheel ride on the beach.
The Oak Bay Tea Party is one those annuals that once you visit it, you don’t miss it again.
On the 30th anniversary of her first Tea Party visit, Oak Bay singer and performer Stephanie Greaves will debut as the emcee for the event. She’ll be on the mic all weekend introducing the bands, games, contests, races, raffles and more, as she’ll also perform at 6 p.m. with her own band on Saturday.
“My first attendance [was when] I was 10 or so years old,” Greaves recalls. “We had moved here from Toronto and my family hasn’t missed the Tea Party since.”
She is able to relive that youthful experience of the Tea Party by bringing her own niece and nephew.
“It’s a cool thing to see it through their eyes.”
Greaves is more than the Tea Party official host. In addition to the Friday night Sock Hop, Greaves organized the weekend of live bands for the Oak Bay Tea Party, which she admits is dangerous, as she took the daring chance at swapping in a series of bands and groups who haven’t performed at the Tea Party before.
“We have done a few things a little different this year, it was a little daring of me. But I heard from Tea Party goers that they were ready for a change.”
Live music will open with a Tea Party favourite Saturday morning, the Oak Bay High concert band (11:45 a.m.) ahead of the official opening ceremonies at 12:30 p.m.
Bands range from jazz to pop, ‘50s rock, ‘60s rock, Latin and more. The Oak Bay High Rhythm and Blues band are on stage at 1 p.m. followed by a series of groups, many of which are new to the Tea Party, the Greater Victoria Police Chorus (2 p.m.), Knackers’ Yard (3 p.m.), Impulse Response (4 p.m.), Chafafa (5 p.m.), Greaves’ band (6 p.m.) and Lateshift (formerly Rukus) at 7:30 p.m.
Greaves’ band will perform a selection from the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, songs that people can dance and clap to, she said.
The weekend will also feature the Shooting Star Amusements midway and rides, plenty of bouncy castles and entertainment for kids, food trucks, an air show and skydivers, the Floating Tea Cup Race, the bathtub race and more.
See the schedule at Oakbayteaparty.com.
Parking at the Tea Party
It is significantly hard to come by parking for vehicles during the Tea Party.
Organizers recommend car pooling, walking, cycling or using BC Transit. There are temporary bike racks added for the weekend.