Revelstoke’s Glacier Challenge may be dissolved after a 30-year run

Revelstoke's Glacier Challenge slo-pitch tournament is at risk of being dissolved. The current board is stepping down and both the City of Revelstoke and the Revelstoke RCMP have expressed concerns over a need for more security during the tournament.

A game in action at the Glacier Challenge. Photo: Emily Kemp/Revelstoke Mountaineer.

The Revelstoke Glacier Challenge slo-pitch tournament is at risk of being dissolved after a 30-year run. Unless new volunteer board members and more volunteers can be found by October 31, there won’t be a 31st Glacier Challenge this August.

The current six-member volunteer board announced it is stepping down amid a number of concerns over the continuation of the tournament.

A statement released by the volunteer board notes a number of concerns including:

– A lack of volunteers.

– Additional requirements being requested from the City of Revelstoke and Revelstoke RCMP.

– An indication that the BC Liquor Control and Licensing Branch will not be renewing the tournament’s liquor license without significant changes and control in respect to open liquor.

– An indication from the city, RCMP, and a number of residents that they do not wish the tournament to continue.

“We do not feel that it can continue to be profitable, nor that it will be well received, here in Revelstoke,” the statement said. (You can read the full statement here).

Board member Maggie Spizzirri said the 2017 tournament was mostly managed by the six volunteer board members with the help of a few additional volunteers during the tournament.

“This year we (board members) took on all of the registration, camping, and cleaning the washrooms,” said Spizzirri. “For us it’s too much work for the six people on the board.”

Spizzirri said the board is concerned the tournament is at risk of losing money if the changes being requested by the city and the RCMP are put in place.The tournament provides an economic spin-off for the community during the August-long weekend, but the tournament itself generally loses money.

“We didn’t lose money this year, but generally the tournament loses money every year,” she said.

Spizzirri said the changes being requested by the city and the RCMP, including the need for more security, are valid.

“In talking to the RCMP, based on what they saw last year the Liquor Branch will not be renewing the license unless changes are made. They indicated more security is needed which is a valid concern,” said Spizzirri. “For the tournament to be sustainable we would have to change things, we may have to look at if there could be a music festival or not.”

Spizzirri said there is also a need to attract more volunteers, estimating around 30 volunteers are needed for the weekend.

“It’s difficult to find people who are willing to volunteer their time,” she said.

The current Glacier Challenge board is hoping other residents of Revelstoke will create a new board and continue the tournament. Spizzirri said current board members willing to help transition new board members.

Anyone interested in creating a new board and continuing the tournament can email by October 31, 2017. If there is no interest any remaining funds from the tournament will be donated to Revelstoke charities.