Isabella GiaV ready to hit the slopes. (Contributed by Isabella GiaV)

Mighty moose ‘dragathon’ at Fernie raises funds for mental health awareness

Drag performers will be doing laps of the Mighty Moose at FAR next week to raise funds for the Elk Valley Suicide Taskforce

A gaggle of drag performers will be doing laps at the Fernie Alpine Resort next week to raise awareness of mental health and suicide in the Elk Valley.

Local performer, Isabella GiaV – who normally does performances and a spot of drag bingo around town – said that the event was to raise money for local not-for-profit, the Elk Valley Suicide Taskforce and the work they do, while putting a spotlight on mental health.

There were few better ways to do that than running a four-hour dragathon, said GiaV.

“You don’t see too many fundraisers about suicide – drag is so bold, drag is so out there, and it draws the eye. Suicide is a topic that we don’t talk about, so I thought it would be good to put it to the forefront.”

GiaV said that the work being done by the Taskforce was vital and much needed.

“They’re really trying to tackle the stigma around suicide.”

The Taskforce was formed in early 2020 in response to a string of local suicides in the Elk Valley, and seeks to raise the profile of mental health, and talk about suicide and crisis without stigma.

To help, GiaV along with seven other drag performers will be doing laps of “the most extreme run on the ski hill”- the Mighty Moose, for four hours on Wednesday night next week (March 24).

There will be videos and entertainment – along with all the glamour and glitz that would come with having a posse of drag performers tearing up the hill for an evening.

The performer that clocks up the most laps and helps raise the most money will be crowned “Miss Fernie”.

GiaV said that what had started out as an effort to organize an event in keeping with COVID-restrictions had the potential to be much more, with the resort having gone out of it’s way to book some night skiing time to allow for more space for the performers.

Locals wanting to donate can do so through the events Gofundme account at gofundme.com/f/mighty-moose-dragathon.

The dragathon will be on Wednesday night, but donations are open now, and there will be videos and updates posted in the lead up, and during the event.

Sadly, keen supporters can’t ski with the performers this year, but nobody will miss out thanks to live videos and performances.

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