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Photos + Video: Thousands brave Coquitlam heat for 2023 Tirgan Summer Festival

The Persian summer celebration saw Coquitlam visitors dance for joy in the evening after seeking shade from 30-degree temperatures.

Temperatures hovered around 30°C this past weekend — a fitting backdrop for an annual event that acknowledges summer and its offerings.

The 2023 Tirgan Festival brought thousands to Coquitlam's Town Centre Park on Saturday (July 15) to take in the sights and sounds of Iranian and Persian culture.

Most visitors and revellers sought shade from the heat and humidity in the early hours of the 3 to 10 p.m. gathering, organized each year by the Tri-City Iranian Cultural Society.

But activities and performances around the community plaza stage lifted everyone's spirits, as was the goal of the annual festival.

This was especially in anticipation of the mass dance party that occurred near the end of the day.

@tricitynews Summer’s here. ☀️ #tricitynews #coquitlam #towncentrepark #tirgan #summervibes #summerfestival ♬ original sound - TriCityNews

Tirgan — globally known as the largest celebration of Iranian arts and culture — is celebrated through singing, dancing and traditional music.

It also recognizes water and its meaningful impact on Iranian culture, which is conducted through the splashing or spraying of water during the festival.

In the park, local Persian-owned and operated businesses set up tents to interact with festival-goers.

Several backgammon tables were also set up as the board game is believed to have been created by the Persian Empire centuries ago.

Notable dignitaries that visited Tirgan, some of which tested their Kurdish dancing skills on the plaza stage, included Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart, Couns. Brent Asmundson and Matt Djonlic, Port Moody—Coquitlam MP Bonita Zarrillo and Coquitlam—Burke Mountain MLA Fin Donnelly.