Fernie Meat Market owner Mark Brown with the newest addition to his Griz Pins collection. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Griz Days this weekend!

The 44th annual Griz Days will be mostly online

Griz Pins 2021 are on sale as part of a limited edition run of only 1,000 pins.

In a typical year up to 4,000 pins would be made for the annual Griz Days, but with the popular festival taking on a new, virtual form in 2021 so it could continue it’s 44-year run unbroken, only a thousand have been made.

In 2021, instead of winning a cash prize, the buyer of the winning Griz Pin will be able to nominate a charity to receive $1,000 in their name.

For Mark Brown of the Fernie Meat Market, the pins being a limited edition wasn’t going to stop him from getting his hands on the latest edition.

“It’s a tradition for me,” said Brown, who has amassed a collection of 42 pins over the years.

Griz Pins are available to purchase for $3 from the Fernie Meat Market, the Fernie Visitor Information Centre, Drift and Sonder, Fernie Distillers, The Fernie Salvation Army Thrift Shop, Fernie Mountain Spirits and Big Bang Bagels.

“Griz Days is all about community spirit – show yours by proudly wearing your Griz Pin this weekend and supporting local charity,” said Brad Parsell of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce, which organizes Griz Days each year.

“New this year is a Griz Pin social media contest. Post a photo of you proudly wearing your Griz Pin with the hashtag #showusyourgrizpin to win a $100 gift voucher from a local business!”

Griz Days is this weekend, between March 5 and 7, with events mostly online to keep with Provincial Health Orders.

Some planned virtual events include pre-recorded Extreme Griz content, a short documentary about the history of Griz Days and a virtual Francofest concert.

The community can also enjoy self-guided activities around town like a drive-thru Griz Days float display, a high-altitude fireworks display and physically distanced sightings of the Griz himself at Fernie Alpine Resort – to name a few. For the full Griz Days guide, check out ferniegrizdays.com.

READ MORE: Griz Days goes (mostly) virtual

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