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VIDEO: City of Kelowna reaches out to longboarders to make events legal

A downhill longboard racing event held Saturday in Kelowna was done without city approval and organizers could have faced fines.

But the city is not planning to pursue that.

Instead, the Head of Event Development is reaching out a helping hand.

On Saturday, longboards were seen racing at impressive speeds in heat after heat, while area residents looked on.

"We want to see those events in town," said Chris Babcock. "We want to see the city animated in a positive way."

Yet for whatever reason, organizers of the event chose to put it on without the city's knowledge.

<who> Photo Credit: KelownaNow

"We were unaware of that particular event," said Babcock. But rather than seeking anything punitive, he is taking a more positive approach.

"Our main concern when hosting events in Kelowna is to ensure the safety of participants and spectators."

<who> Photo Credit: KelownaNow

Safety is also a concern of the organizers it would seem.

There were people in high visibility vests, there was traffic control and other safety measures were in place while the longboarders were competing.

But the city has an outdoor events committee that consults with traffic officials, transportation and emergency responders on what should be in place to pull it off efficiently and safely.

<who> Photo Credit: KelownaNow

"We would like to convey to them that we are here to help them through those hoops if they want to organize it on an official basis," he said.

And Babcock even went as far as to promise that the organizers will not face any fines for hosting the Saturday event without proper city approval.

<who>Photo credit: KelownaNow </who>

"That's right," he said. "We would love for them to phone us right now so if they want to do it again we can help them out and do it the right way."

We were unable to reach the organizers of the event for comment.



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