The Canadian Cheese Rolling Festival is back! On August 15th, 2009 cheese rolling aficionadoes will make the trek to Whistler's Upper Village on Blackcombe Mountain where they will then hurl themselves down a hill chasing after a wheel of cheese. This quaint ritual, now in its second year, is modeled after the competition in Gloucestershire at Cooper's Hill in England and differs only in that in England, racers chase after a wheel of Double Gloucester - here, racers will chase after wheels of Cracked Pepper Verdelait Cheese made especially for the event by Natural Pastures Cheese Co. in Courtenay, BC.
If you're skeptical about racing after rolling cheese wheels or simply prefer to preserve your limbs, festival organizers have put together a variety of other activities like a cheese obstacle course, cheese twister and a potato bag race. Plenty of BC cheese will be available for tasting from local producers Hilary's Artisan Cheeses, The Farm House Natural Cheeses, Natural Pastures Cheese Co. and Little Qualicum Cheeseworks. Roman Danylo, comedian and star of CTV's Comedy Inc. will also be making an appearance.
For more info or to register (both men's and women's categories are offered), see the Canadian Cheese Rolling website. Winners receive the wheel of cheese they so eagerly sought....and if you sign up soon, you will also be eligible to receive a Cheese Rolling baseball cap.
[photo courtesy Dairy Farmers of Canada]