Shirley Hardy*, Contributor
The Parish of St John’s Anglican Church, Cobble Hill was started in 1887 when Sir John A. Macdonald was Prime Minister and the railway hadn’t arrived in the Cowichan Valley. 127 years later, the church will be holding a popular event in the community – the Annual September Fest, now in its thirtieth year.
The September Fest is an old fashioned church fair where you can have fun, eat tasty food and find great bargains. Children always enjoy the games, crafts and Kid’s Korner. You can find hamburgers, hotdogs and drinks in the Food Court; drinks, chili, sandwiches and desserts in the St. John’s Cafe; and, sweets and desserts at the baked goods stall.
The Country Store is a popular booth at the fair.
To find the bargains for which the festival is known, start at the Yard Sale and the Country Store and then move on to the clothing and stalls. You can also find deals at the Art Sale in the church and at the popular jewelry tables and Better Buys tables in the church hall. Before you leave the fair plan to visit the Silent Auction. Festival attendees often like to stay until the Silent Auction closes so that they can monitor their bids. The carefully curated items are that popular! Church members have spent many months carefully putting together baskets and special items for the auction. This stall has an impressive selection of packaged deals that you can bid on and they are all great bargains.
One of the feature items in this year’s Silent Auction will be a hand crafted 17.5 foot Sunnyside Cruiser cedar strip canoe with two paddles. If the church receives an acceptable bid before the festival, the canoe will be sold in advance. For more information, please leave a message for Shirley Hardy at the church.
If you need any help or information while you are at the festival, please speak with one of the volunteers in the red shirts. They are either parishoners or friends of the church who live in the Cowichan community. You might even meet one of the volunteers who is flying out from Winnipeg to help out the week before the festival and on the day.
For more information and for instructions about finding the church visit www.stjohnscobblehill.ca.
My husband and I in front of the exterior of St. John’s Church. The church is nestled in the woods in a charming setting.