Oak Bay firefighter Brad Trenholm oversees one of several grills cooking during Sausage Fest at Willows Park Saturday

Oak Bay firefighter Brad Trenholm oversees one of several grills cooking during Sausage Fest at Willows Park Saturday

Sausage Fest shifts into summer

Sausage Fest is slated for June 24 from noon to 9 p.m. at Willows Beach Park

A warmer climate pulls Sausage Fest to a June date in its second year.

“With the weather last year being a bit chilly and more unpredictable, it’s going to be a bit warmer,” said Jason Hodge, executive director Oak Bay Fire Fighters Charitable Foundation. “It’s the first Saturday after school’s out too. Ideally we’d like to do this annually and keep it close to that date.”

Sausage Fest is slated for June 24 from noon to 9 p.m. at Willows Beach Park.

Last year’s family-friendly event, sponsored in part by the Oak Bay News, also included bouncy castles, face painting by the 4th Victoria Pathfinders, a dunk tank and a variety of local entertainers.

The foundation plans to build on local talent, including potential addition of Oak Bay High performers this year. They’re building on many suggestions from last year’s event, adding a cidery to the brewers on hand for beverages.

“I’m also in talks with the meatless butcher,” Hodge said, noting a few people sought a vegetarian option last year.

“We cooked 1,100 sausages last year, this year we’re shooting for 2,500. Hopefully it’ll be busier this year.”

Last year’s inaugural event raised close to $10,000 with the bulk earmarked for a new playground at Willows elementary, and a portion supporting prostate cancer programs and research and the charitable foundation’s other causes.

With Victoria’s emphasis on cycling infrastructure and health and wellness a focus of the department, Oak Bay Fire Fighter Charitable Foundation plans to raise funds for bike fix stations in the community, alongside their other causes.

“A lot of guys ride their bikes to work here,” Hodge said. “We’re trying to commit to health (at Oak Bay Fire Department) so let’s get the community involved as well.”

The event is admission by donation.

Visit oakbayfirefighters.com to learn more about the foundation.