Inspired by a childhood passion and increasing curiosity for the mysterious forest creatures, local podcaster Sheldon Quewezance will soon host the Nicola Valley’s first-ever Bigfoot Conference.
Next month, sasquatch researchers from across the province, namely B.C.’s interior, will gather in nearby Shulus for a one-day conference regarding the elusive giant often known as ‘bigfoot.’ While many dispute its existence, Quewezance said he looks to foster a space for connections about sasquatch, which he has had a passion for since a young age.
“To me, sasquatches and British Columbia kind of go hand-in-hand, so I thought I would take a chance, try and organize something, and see what we can do,” said Quewezance.
“I’ve had a long fascination with them [sasquatches] every since I was a little boy. When I moved to British Columbia in 2003, that fascination kind of grew into an obsession after that, to the point that me and two of my best friends started doing a research group.”
Quewezance and his self-proclaimed research group’s work led to a sighting of a sasquatch in the Nicola Valley in 2018, which sparked his curiosity even more. While out searching for bigfoot late one night, Quewezance said he believes he saw one while scanning the treeline with his telescopic flashlight. Its ink black face, bright eyes, and large stature, along with its large hands gripping a nearby try, immediately stood out to Quewezance. While turning around to calm a fellow research member, the sasquatch supposedly disappeared into the treeline.
His encounter, and general love for his research of the sasquatch, led Quewezance to start the Nicola Valley Bigfoot podcast, which the idea for the conference was born of. The podcast now has over 136 episodes, with five star ratings on many podcasting platforms. Quewezance invites guests to share their encounters, discuss the impacts of sasquatch research, and connect over their shared passion.
The Nicola Valley Bigfoot Conference will feature a panel of sasquatch researchers from across B.C., vendors, a food truck, and a space for people to bond over bigfoot. Quewezance hopes to use the conference as a teachable moment.
“I think people should expect to learn things that maybe they weren’t expecting about them, such as the misconception that they’re just another primate running though the woods, which doesn’t seem to be the case,” added Quewezance.“They’re a lot more intelligent than we give them credit for.”
In addition to sharing his knowledge, along with fellow panelists, Quewezance hopes to start the conversation on what he said has been a ‘taboo’ subject.
“It’s okay to talk about sasquatch,” noted Quewezance. “If you had a sighting, or an encounter with one of them, consider yourself lucky, not to be cursed or humiliated for it.”
The Nicola Valley Bigfoot Conference will take place on May 13, starting at 8:00 a.m., at Shulus Arena near Lower Nicola. Tickets are $30. For more information, or to pre-order tickets, contact Quewezance at email@example.com.