About 1,000 little footballers from various corners of Vancouver Island are expected to participate in the Mini World Cup of soccer, which returns to the Comox Valley May 14 and 15.
The Upper Island Soccer Association event is for Under-eight to U11 girls and boys.
Each team will be assigned a country to represent. The ‘Parade of Nations’ offers the players a change to dress up and learn about different cultures.
“It’s the first time this event has happened since 2019 and our first time hosting since 2014,” said Stefan Szkwarek, president of the Comox Valley United Soccer Club.
“The mini World Cup will be a celebration of nations, and leading the parade will be Ukraine. We will have refugee families leading the march, along with myself and other members of the local Ukrainian community.”
Szkwarek expects about 500 of the players will be from out of town.
The tournament is being held at Valley View Park in Courtenay. Most teams will play two games on Saturday and two on Sunday. Games will be six versus six.