TAYLOR, B.C. -- Mayor Rob Fraser will show off his skills at the 50th Anniversary World’s Invitational Gold Panning Championships in Taylor this weekend.

“So essentially I’m trying to soak the pan and get that gold to wash down,” Fraser said as the water began to splash. He’s shaking rocks and sand out while hoping 15 fine flakes of gold stay in his pan.

The mayor admits he hasn’t practiced his panning since 2019 when he won the non-professional B-class. The pandemic has cancelled the last two events and this weekend Fraser will compete against the best of the best in the A-class.

Although it’s the mayor’s last championship in office, Fraser says he will continue to compete.

“When you see that sparkle of gold. It just gives you an adrenaline rush and I think people get that fever. Once they start doing it they want to keep doing it and they come back year after year after year.”

No previous experience is required to try out panning this weekend. There is an opportunity for everyone of all ages to unearth gold flakes and nuggets across various events.

The festivities kick off Friday night with a parade and competitions are scheduled all day Saturday and Sunday.