Pacific Rim Whale Festival (March 6 to 14)

Pacific Rim Whale Festival 2010
Pacific Rim Whale Festival - March 6th to 14th

Every March, spring splashes into Canada with the Pacific Rim Whale Festival! This year’s festival begins in Ucluelet and Tofino on Saturday, March 6 and runs through to Sunday, March 14th. Join the fun on the shores of Vancouver Island’s wild west coast, as we celebrate the visit of approximately 20,000 Grey Whales on their northbound migration from the Baja Peninsula to Alaska’s Bering Strait.

Come experience the wonders and charm of the 24th Annual Pacific Rim Whale Festival, with a slew of events taking place throughout the coastal towns of Tofino and Ucluelet and the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s all about Grey Whale and marine life education, inspirational talks and interpretive walks, children’s fun for the small and culinary events for the tall, First Nations cultural workshops and more – join our celebration of coastal life!

Gray Whale
One of many Gray Whales migrating along the west coast of Vancouver Island.

Here’s a small sampling of some of the events taking place over the course of the 8 day festival. Be sure to visit the 24th Annual Pacific Rim Whale Festival web site to confirm dates and events and to download the complete festival schedule!

Saturday, March 6

1 pm

Whale’s Eye View: Interactive SCUBA Diving Introduction with Ocean Planet Adventures – Limited capacity for gear!
West Coast Motel – in the pool, Ucluelet

2 pm

Sea Change Series hosts Children’s Book Launch & Interactive Presentation with Elin Kelsey, author of Hey! Not Your Typical Book About The Environment
Clayoquot Field Station, Tofino

Sunday, March 7

10 am or 1 pm

Whales & Tales: An Adventure By Boat! with naturalist Peter Shulze of Strawberry
Island Marine Research Society

Ocean Outfitters, Tofino
(12 spaces/boat) $79/To reserve 250-725-2866

2:30-4:30 pm

Whale Watching Station & Interpretive Loop
Amphitrite Point Lighthouse & Wild Pacific Trail, Ucluelet

Monday, March 8

11 am or 2 pm

Meares Island Big Tree Trail: Guided Hikes with naturalist Devorah Reeves
Depart (by boat) from Ocean Outfitters, Tofino
(10 spaces/trip) $49 adults/$20.10 kids/To reserve 250-725-2866

1 pm

Beach Seining Interactive Specimen Collecting with Ucluelet Aquarium interpreters & biologist friends
Meet at Terrace Beach, Ucluelet

Tuesday, March 9

10 am

Button Artist Recognition Celebration artist Roy Henry Vickers
Eagle Aerie Gallery, Tofino

11 am

Storytelling with artist Roy Henry Vickers
Eagle Aerie Gallery, Tofino

1 pm

Sand Dune Safari with Parks Canada staff Sibylla Helms & Carl Sieber
Wickaninnish Beach – Parking lot C,
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

7 pm

Solitude: Seeking Wisdom In Extremes – Slideshow & Stories on a year alone in the Patagonia wilderness with author Bob Kull
Wild Heather Books, Ucluelet

Wednesday, March 10

10 am-1 pm

Marine Mammal Research Day – Naturalist Tour By Boat!
Depart from Subtidal Adventures, Ucluelet
(12 spaces), $79/To reserve 250-726-7336

3 pm

Killer Whales: Recent Research on a Coastal Icon with Meghan McKillop of the Vancouver Aquarium
Green Point Campground Theatre, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

7 pm-12 am

Martini Migration: Feathers, Fur & Fins Fundraising Event – featuring Current Swell
Tofino Community Hall, Tofino
Advance tickets only: $45

Thursday, March 11

9 am-12 pm

Feathers & Flukes Boat Tour with guest guide & local birder Artie Ahier
Remote Passages Marine Excursions, Tofino
(12 spaces) $84/person/Reserve 250-725-3330

3-4 pm

The Kerplunks – FREE Live Concert with Award Winning Children’s performers at Ucluelet Maritime Kids Day
Seaplane Base Rec Hall, Ucluelet

7 pm-10:30 pm

Feature Presentation “LIVE” @ Media Lounge: An Interactive Multi-media Gallery
& Coastal Sensory Experience with Matt Maran, Randy Celebrini & Esther Celebrini
The Shore/Ocean Outfitters, Tofino
Admission: $5 at the door

7 pm

Barnacle Blues: David Gogo Live in Concert with local openers Left at the Junction
Auction prizes, live blues….and barnacles!
Black Rock Oceanfront Resort, Ucluelet
Tickets: $40 advance or $45 at the door

Friday, March 12

11 am

Skeletons In Our Closets with author & marine biologist Jim Cosgrove
Green Point Campground Theatre, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

3 pm

Wet & Wild: Marine Mammal Research In Barkley & Clayoquot Sounds with marine
mammal biologist Wendy Szaniszlo
Green Point Campground Theatre, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

7 pm

SWARM: Hyper-Kinetic Percussion Theatre Feature musical performance – for all ages!
Seaplane Base Rec Hall, Ucluelet
Tickets at the door: $10 adults/$5 kids 12 & under/Family of 4 pass $25

Saturday, March 13

9:30 am

Wild Pacific Trail: New Section Grand Opening Celebration
Meet at He-Tin-Kis Park – Wild Pacific Trail (opening ceremony site), Ucluelet

10 am-11 am

Recipe for a Rainforest – Family Rainforest Program with the Raincoast Education Society
Meet at He-Tin-Kis Park – Wild Pacific Trail (opening ceremony site), Ucluelet

2 pm

Annual Rubber Fish Race: The tradition of fundraising fun continues!
$3 each or $5 for 2 racing fish
Thornton Creek Hatchery, Port Albion

8 pm

Headwater @ Float Lounge Live Acoustic Music & Whale Appreciation Event!
Black Rock Oceanfront Resort, Admission $10 at the door/Volunteers PRWF shirts get in FREE!

Sunday, March 14

9:30-10:30 am

Surf Rider Foundation Ocean Conservation Beach Clean-Up
Meet at MacKenzie Beach in front of Best Western Tin Wis, Tofino

12 pm-3:30 pm

Chu-yaa-ma-uuk (Gathering of the Whales): Whale Festival Closing Day Celebration
Everyone welcome to a community gathering to share culture through story, dance, song, local art & history and traditionally inspired lunch.
Best Western Tin Wis Resort, Tofino

4 pm

Whale Dip (swim in the sea) – Welcoming Spring to the West Coast!
MacKenzie Beach, Tofino

Gray Whale Tail
The distinctive tail of a Gray Whale.

The Pacific Rim Whale Festival is largely volunteer-fueled, and managed by the Pacific Rim Whale Festival Society, a registered non-profit society.