Guest Information

Welcome to the 37th Annual Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts.

We are proud to present this outstanding program of Canadian writers who will entertain, inspire, engage, and challenge us over the course of four evenings and three days, August 15-18, 2019. Stories build community. They remind us of what we have in common while they help us understand our differences.

We hope you’ll join us to experience some of the rich, vibrant and powerful work being produced by diverse writers across Canada. If you’re new to the Festival, welcome! Please don’t be shy if you have questions. And if you’re returning, welcome back. We look forward to seeing you in Sechelt in August.

Ticket Sales

Tickets will go on sale on WEDNESDAY, MAY 29, 2019 at 8 am by telephone and online.

Note: a small processing fee will be charged for online sales.
Purchase tickets in person starting Thursday, May 30 at the Festival office.

Regardless of how you purchase tickets, you will need to pick up paper tickets printed by the Festival of the Written Arts. Tickets will be ready for pick-up on Wednesday, June 19. We will also hold them for pick-up until you arrive at the Festival in August. Please call the office to make special arrangements to have your tickets mailed.

Office location, hours and contact information

5511 Shorncliffe Avenue, Sechelt
Monday – Friday, 9 am to 4:00 p.m. (4:30 p.m. June, July, August)
Telephone: 604-885-9631 or 1-800-565-9631 / Email:

Please contact the office to make special arrangements to have your tickets mailed.

Festival Pass (Events 1-21)  SOLD OUT$275.00
Day Pass — Friday and Saturday Passes are SOLD OUT$ 95.00
Day Pass — Sunday$ 85.00
Individual Events #1 to 20 $16 each$ 16.00
Closing Night Event #21  with Katherine Penfold Trio$20.00

Please use our Festival Planner when ordering tickets in person or by phone. This will help to prevent errors and speed up the ticketing process.

Method of Payment

By telephone: Visa or MasterCard
Online: Visa, MasterCard, Debit
In person: Visa, MasterCard, Debit, cash, cheque

Please note:

  • There are no refunds unless an event is cancelled. A $5 fee is charged for ticket exchanges.
  • Lost or stolen tickets are the responsibility of the purchaser and cannot be replaced. Tickets purchased by phone can be held in the office and picked up prior to or upon arrival at the festival.

Please read Important Info — The Fine Print, and other Guest Information below.


The Festival takes place in the beautiful Rockwood Gardens, a heritage park located in downtown Sechelt. There is a wheelchair accessible pathway leading directly to the Festival Pavilion, the venue where all events take place. Please call the office at 604-885-9631 in advance to make seating arrangements or to request the assistance of an Accessibility volunteer who can meet you upon arrival.

Parking along Shorncliffe Avenue is reserved for vehicles displaying disability parking permits. There is also a pick-up and drop-off area on Shorncliffe Avenue beside the Festival office.

Washrooms: Please refer to the venue map (below) for the location of wheelchair accessible washrooms. All washrooms are gender neutral.

The venue map is currently being updated to indicate exactly where the wheelchair accessible washrooms and pathways are located.


Rockwood Pavilion

All ticketed events take place in the Festival Pavilion at Rockwood Centre in Sechelt, British Columbia. Click here for full contact information. See venue map.

  • Please note that for security purposes, the Pavilion will be cleared after each performance.
  • Taping and recording any event is prohibited.
  • Use of flash cameras and video recorders is not permitted in the Pavilion.
  • Parents are requested to remove noisy or restless children from the Pavilion.
  • Please, no cellular phones during events.
  • Patrons with special seating needs are requested to call the office prior to attending the festival.
  • Limited parking for patrons with physical disabilities is available on a first come first served basis.
  • There is a drop-off and pick-up area at the Shorncliffe Avenue entrance to the festival site.
  • No dogs are allowed on the festival site (with the exception of service dogs).
  • The Sechelt Farmers & Artisans Market will be on Cowrie Street on the Saturday of the Festival until 2 pm. Please map out your approach in advance and call the Festival office for advice and directions if you’re not familiar with the area.
  • Please sign up for our email newsletter. This helps us to get news and information to you quickly and efficiently.

Festival Attractions

Big Tent at the festival

During the day, the “Big Tent” (located in the parking lot beside the Rockwood Lodge) is the place to browse and buy. That’s where you will find Talewind Books pop-up store. Talewind carries Festival authors’ current and backlist titles and also hosts author signings after each event.

You’re also invited to participate in daily contests at the Rockwood gardens. Look for contest details posted on the bulletin boards throughout the grounds.

Self-Published Authors Under the Big Tent

Sunshine Coast self-published writers have had a significant presence at the Festival for the past 15 years. Returning and new-to-the-Festival authors, artists and poets offer a wide range of genres: humour, mystery, history and the legacy of family stories; picture books for and studies about children; books about self-realization, spiritual and physical fitness.

Travel & Lodging

How do I get to Sechelt?

Passengers and vehicles sail aboard BC Ferries from Horseshoe Bay, in West Vancouver, to Langdale, approximately 15 miles (24 km) from Sechelt. Follow Highway 101 to Sechelt. Public transit and taxi are available between Langdale and Sechelt, and it’s a popular bike route, too.

If you’re travelling from central and northern Vancouver Island, or Powell River, travel with BC Ferries from Saltery Bay to Earls Cove. Then follow Highway 101 to Sechelt, a scenic drive that takes approximately one hour.

Find or offer a ride to the Festival at


Places to stay

Pebbles Restaurant in Sechelt

Sunshine Coast Tourism has listings for everything from campsites to resorts. There is limited accommodation within walking distance of the Rockwood Centre, where the Festival is held, so be sure to ask about location when you make your inquiry.


Weather & what to wear

Summer days in Sechelt are usually sunny with a refreshing breeze off the ocean. But sometimes, dare we say, it rains. Your best bet is to bring casual, layer-able clothing and comfortable walking shoes. Please note that the Festival Pavilion is not heated.

Can I bring my family & friends?

Absolutely. For those who do not wish to attend Festival events, there are lots of activities in our region to keep them busy: sightseeing, beaching, hiking, mountain biking, golfing, boating, and more.

Green Initiatives

Please support our efforts to reduce waste. Bring your own refillable water bottles and coffee cups. Commercially bottled water is not sold on the festival site but drinking water will be available. All of our plates, cutlery, napkins and beverage cups are compostable. These items, as well as paper, cardboard and food waste, can be tossed into clearly marked collection bins instead of the garbage.

Jul 29/11: Quill & Quire article, Literary festivals set a green example

Important Info—The Fine Print

  1. All information is subject to change without notice.
  2. Space is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Seating is not reserved.
  3. A minimum number of participants is required to operate each event. The Festival reserves the right to cancel an event at any time, in which case, your money would be refunded.
  4. In the event of cancellation, the Festival shall have no liability beyond the refund of monies paid to the Festival by the purchaser, which shall constitute a full settlement.
  5. REFUNDS There are no refunds unless an event is cancelled. A $5 fee is charged for ticket exchanges.
  6. LOST OR STOLEN TICKETS Lost or stolen tickets are the responsibility of the purchaser and cannot be replaced. Tickets purchased by phone can be held in the office and picked up upon arrival at the festival.
  7. The Festival acts only as an agent for services offered.