Figure skater Jaymee Downey will represent Mission at the upcoming BC Winter Games in Fort St. John. (Submitted)

Mission athletes heading to BC Winter Games

Number of local athletes qualify for event in Fort St. John later this month

With less than two weeks until the BC Winter Games open, a handful of Mission athletes are getting set to compete.

The 2020 BC Winter Games occur in Fort St. John from Feb. 20 to 23, and will feature over 1,000 competitors participating in 15 different sports.

Mission will have athletes from four different sports, and also a number of supervisors, coaches and officials.

Hitting the ice will be speed skater Arthur Barnsdale and figure skater Jaymee Downey.

Noen Tomelden will represent Mission and the Fraser Valley in the sport of judo, and wheelchair basketball athlete Lachlan Sanford is also heading to Fort St. John.

Barnsdale qualified for the Games back in November during the Zone 3 BC Winter Games Qualifier, which was hosted by his club team, the Mission Racers.

RELATED: Mission skater qualifies for BC Winter Games

Downey, who skates out of the Abbotsford Skating Club, has competed in the sport for several years and has excelled at local events such as Jingle Blades.

Also representing Mission at the event are officials Darcy Falk (archery), Asher Barnsdale (speed skating), Jared Bolland (speed skating) and Kristina Krieck (speed skating).

Coaches Danielle Westwick (diving) and Jane Green (speed skating), as well as adult supervisor Lawrence Sanford (wheelchair basketball), will also be making the trip.

Deroche resident Benny Peters is also going to the Games to compete in alpine skiing.

The 1,000 athletes will be supported by over 300 coaches and over 190 officials who have earned their certification in order to provide the best knowledge and expertise to the athletes and the competition.

Volunteers in Fort St. John have been preparing for the past 18 months to host the Games.

There will be over 1,600 volunteers working to ensure the participants have exceptional competition and a first-rate experience with opening and closing ceremonies, special events, and wonderful hospitality.

It all kicks off with the opening ceremonies on Feb. 20, with athletes beginning the competition on Feb. 21.

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