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Corrine Smith, then a Grade 6 student at Princess Alexandra School, competes in the 2018 Dragons’ Den Challenge sponsored by the Rotary Club of Hay River Sunrise.
NNSL file photo

Two more long-running events in Hay River have fallen victim to Covid-19 and have been cancelled for this year.

On Sept. 30, the Hay River RCMP announced that, due to restrictions on gatherings because of Covid-19, it will not be hosting its annual Spook-A-Rama event on Oct. 31.

It will be the first time the event has been cancelled since it began 35 years ago.

Until this year, hundreds of students gathered for the special Halloween celebration.

“We want to thank all the businesses, community groups and community members who have assisted us over the years to host this annual event,” said Lynne Buth, the Hay River detachment’s service assistant and one of the co-ordinators of Spook-A-Rama, in a news release.

Meanwhile, the annual Dragons’ Den Challenge, presented by the Rotary Club of Hay River Sunrise, will also not be going ahead in December.

“This year the Rotary Club has sat down and talked about it, and we decided given the situation with the Covid restrictions on the schools and the students that we are going to pass on this year,” said Tom Lakusta, a club member and the event’s co-ordinator.

The Dragons’ Den Challenge, a competition in which students pitch business ideas to a panel of local entrepreneurs, is based on the popular CBC show Dragons’ Den.

Lakusta said the cancellation is a disappointment.

“But it’s also something that’s beyond our control, and we have to respect the needs and the rules in the Northwest Territories and in our community, and the schools,” he said.

Lakusta added it is expected that the Dragons’ Den Challenge will return next year.

“It’s a program that has generated interest from school kids in this community,” he said. “It’s a program that Rotary Club is very proud of and absolutely we would want to hold it again next year once the opportunity presents itself.”

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Paul Bickford

Paul Bickford is the reporter for Hay River Hub.

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