by Marjo Koskinen
Photo Credit – Claus Andersen/ Golf Canada
by Roy Wood
Osoyoos will be the focus of amateur golf in Canada this August as the Osoyoos Golf Club (OGC) hosts the 49th playing of the Canadian Women’s Mid-Amateur and Senior Championships.
The championships comprise one of Golf Canada’s premier events and will feature women amateurs from across the country and beyond.
“We are very excited to be conducting the Canadian Women’s Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship at one of the finest golf courses in British Columbia,” said tournament director Adam Cinel of Golf Canada.
“It’s great to be back in the Osoyoos community – our competitors are in for a phenomenal experience as we look to write the next chapter of Canadian golf history.”
Osoyoos Mayor Sue McKortoff is delighted with the decision to hold the event here. “These sorts of events are good for the town. They’re good for tourism and economic development.
“I certainly think that it’s a feather in our cap that not only do they enjoy coming to Osoyoos, with our weather, but obviously the Osoyoos Golf Club has put together a package that was totally appropriate to what Golf Canada needed.”
Competition takes place on the Park Meadows 18-hole championship course at OGC over three days: Sunday, August 18 through Tuesday, August 20. An official practice round is scheduled for Saturday.
The Desert Gold course will remain open for OGC members and guests.
Up to 156 players will compete for four trophies: Mid-Amateur – for players over 25 years of age; Mid-Master – over 40; Senior – over 50; and Super Senior – over 60.
Two-time defending champion Sue Wooster of Australia is expected to return to Canada for the events. In last year’s championships at Lookout Point Country Club near Niagara Falls, Wooster captured the Mid-Amateur, Mid-Master and Senior titles.
Officials and staff from Golf Canada will visit OGC over the spring and summer and then arrive in force the week before the event for final preparations and to direct proceedings.
OGC general manager Doug Robb is proud of the club’s selection as this year’s host. “There are about 2,500 golf clubs in Canada and only eight national events a year. So, we feel very fortunate to have this opportunity to show off the club and the town of Osoyoos.”
Club president Herb Wycherley is excited about what the event will do for the club and the town: “This championship will allow us to showcase our 36-hole facility, our town and the Okanagan wine region to the rest of Canada. I’m sure participants will enjoy their total experience here at Osoyoos Golf Club, located in Canada’s only desert.”
Even though the event is five months away, the local tournament committee, under the direction of Host Club Tournament Chair Lise Mathieu, is hard at work rounding up volunteers and sponsors and attending to the myriad details involved in a major national championship.
“Hosting a Golf Canada national event is no small task,” said Mathieu. “All aspects of golf operations need to be fine-tuned to provide a challenging experience for about 150 women golfers, some coming from as far as Australia. It takes a dedicated staff and a host of flexible volunteers to pull this off.”
The committees reporting to Mathieu include: golf operations; agronomy and course maintenance; food and beverage; finance and sponsorship; communications; player services and transportation; volunteer services; and community engagement. “Staff and volunteers have been working diligently with tournament director Cinel to deliver a top-notch championship that will reflect well on the Osoyoos Golf Club and the Town of Osoyoos,” she said.
Destination Osoyoos executive director Kelley Glazer said: “A recent study shows that in Osoyoos, a golfer visit represents approximately a $500 per day spent per couple (which) goes) into our community restaurants, shops, golf courses, hotels, campgrounds and wineries. We are looking forward to welcoming all participants and their friends and family.”
15th anniversary of the annual poem to welcome the crocus.
Late this year, I do not know???
What the delay to show and grow
And here they are, a bit small yet
I know they will soon bigger get
Just glad the’re here and rockin’ now
I wondered what the big delay
Were we going to wait ’til May?
Knew they’d come but there was doubt
Whether or not they would come out
Silly me, and frown, nature will not let us down
One thing is clear out on my walk
People smile and want to talk
They know it too, a fine fine feeling
When those beauties stop concealing
OK, let us applaud and go to town
They are a promise and I’ll take it
Feels like we are going to make it
I suppose we just got bit antsy
Want things fresh, not from the pantry
Food right from the ground tastes better
And so we stroll pause and enjoy
No matter whether girl or boy
The rituals of Spring engage
The people here of every age
Welcome the crocus, welcome
Maybe the street sweeper will start soon too
The South Okanagan Similkameen Preservation Society would like to highlight two events from the previous week that provide some context to the debate about the proposed National Park Reserve.
The first was a visit by Premier John Horgan where he stated “We’ve been aware of this for some time, I know I support the community’s drive to have a national park,” Horgan saying his belief is that much of the community wants the park to happen.” The SOSPS research on the subject shows that 35% of the community around the park strongly oppose the park, and that only 24% strongly support it.
Last week also was punctuated by the decision of the NDP Provincial Government to allow clear cut logging in 314 areas – specifically denoted to be sensitive Caribou habitat. Both the Wilderness Committee and Greenpeace have denounced this decision as being shortsighted, and very damaging environmentally. Given this history of this Governments decisions like “Site C”, perhaps the environmental protection is no longer an issue for them?
The second event that was revealed on Feb 11th was the CBC discovery about the fiscal condition of Parks Canada overall. The SOSPS has now examined the Opus Report, and the results are dire for the agency. Spending requirements for basic safety and upkeep on 40% of the Parks Canada assets amount to 9.5 billion dollars – just to maintain what buildings and property they have.
An additional 3.3 billion is recommended as Parks Canada has not upgraded any infrastructure with any anticipation for climate change. The report goes on to how the Parks Canada Agency has failed to maintain to such a degree as to generate this quote “About 40 per cent of Parks Canada’s buildings, forts, bridges and other items of real estate are unsafe or unusable, or require billions of dollars in major repairs, says a new report.” This detail of fiscal inadequacy furthers the concerns locals have about inviting the Parks Canada brand onto their landscape. Some of the suggestions in the report recommend new fees and tolls as a means to recover costs. It creates the question of how long will access to this proposed park be restricted to those that can afford the fees for entry – or worse, the restriction on highway use if Parks Canada chooses to toll the highway passing through the proposed parkland west of Osoyoos. More importantly, how can a financially challenged agency like Parks Canada be entrusted to make the best decisions for our precious ecology and environment?
While the consultation period has ended, Parks Canada has conceded the need for transparency, and confirm Friday March 15th that a 3rd party agency will be contracted to tabulate and verify the findings of the survey. No word on what agency this is, or their history of service with Parks Canada.
Announcements will be made in the coming weeks about public events, petitions and proposed referendums in various municipalities and rural districts. The SOSPS has received over 5000 online engagements with the public since the end of the consultation period and the two subjects detailed in this press release. The community demand action and accountability from their elected officials, and many are working to see that happen.
We will continue to bridge the divide in our community created by the Parks Canada Proposal with solutions that all people of the Similkameen and South Okanagan valleys can agree upon, for the betterment of the environment and ecology.
It somehow seems strange to me that in a world of expanding possibilities, more and more the citizens of the world isolate themselves. Think about it. We have become fearful of others, fearful of those who are different and as a society we are now afraid of ourselves.
In the fifties and sixties we were full of hope and promise. We were looking for medical breakthroughs, we sent young people to the third world to lift people up out of poverty. We were exploring the heavens and planning to send a man to the moon.
We viewed the world as a place of possibility. Today that is gone. It is like someone defaced the mask of hope and promise. Instead of praising new ideas and concepts we collectively find fault instead of adding to the toolbox of progress.
As a society and a world collective we have done some amazing things in the field of math and science. We have advanced the world of knowledge and put that knowledge into more hands than ever before. In a span of a mere twenty years we have revolutionize how the modern world works. That being said why are we such a discontented lot?
There are a number of reasons some with merit and some without merit. The information has increased transparency and scrutiny, on a universal scale. We have also witnessed the failings of our leaders. Failings that have always been with us and prior to the information age, they were failings out of site and out of mind. The trouble is we begin to hold others to a higher standard without applying the benchmark to ourselves.
In our enthusiasm of the fifties and sixties, we began to believe in the concept of instant solutions. We remember the past as we recall it not necessarily as an accurate picture of what was. We have all heard of the good ole days. It was a simpler time and people were happy and everything was wonderful.
Let us explore reality. We didn’t have the tools we have today jobs took longer and were labor intensive. We didn’t have the conveniences. We didn’t social programs like medicare. The transportation systems and choices didn’t allow us as much freedom of movement. To top it off our life expectancy was about fifteen years shorter. If everyone was contented then, we would not have had a need for progress and new things.
We have done all this and we feel more isolated than before. Our problems lie in our inability to adjust to change. We don’t trust our leaders and we are afraid of he future and each other.
Have you ever noticed children don’t hang back in fear and they don’t succumb to vises like hate? Perhaps we should all take a step back and look at the world through a child’s eyes. They see a world of hope and promise, that we created and are now bent on denying is here.
The only thing the adult world collectively needs to do is go back and rediscover the positive feeling our grandparents had that together we could craft a better world.
The BC Coroners Service has released two updated reports on illicit drug overdose deaths and fentanyl-detected deaths to the end of January 2019.
Key findings include:
Because the 2019 data reported is only for the month of January, data should be interpreted with caution and is subject to change as investigations conclude.
Pointed out to me that one media outlet not mentioned in last poll – could be a Freudian Slipper.
That one taken down – will run a poll for Osoyoos first and then Oliver later in the week
Actually designed to find out where readers get their news in South Okanagan
Southern Okanagan Secondary School Enrichment Fund Society
Our 24th annual SOSS Enrichment Fund Society golf tournament fund raiser will be held at Fairview Mountain Golf course with a start time of *12:00 Noon on Saturday April 6th and a start time of 10:00 am Sunday April 7th. If you would like more information about participating in this popular golf tournament contact Susan Capyk at 250-498-4336.
Each year we are grateful for our corporate sponsors which are the backbone of our fund raising golf tournament. Last year 38 businesses supported the graduating students of Oliver and OK Falls. The golf tournament wouldn’t be successful as it is without the participation of the golfers who whole heartily enjoy the game, the course, and the cause. Thank you.
For twenty-four years the SOSS Enrichment Fund Society has awarded scholarships to SOSS graduating students to pursue post-secondary education. This year the society has committed a total of $25,000.00 to be awarded to 27 students. In the past approximately 450 students have received financial assistance.
This year we are highlighting two alumni graduates who started their post-secondary education with a career path in mind and then found their true passion along their journey. We are proud of Jared Lee and Chris Martiniuk and wish them further success in their careers.
If you would like to read more about the SOSS Enrichment Fund Society our website or contact John Echlin at 250-498-6781
Name: Jared Lee
Parents: Ron and Roxie Lee
Siblings: Kelsey and Robyn
Current Location: Kelowna
My name is Jared Lee and I am a proud Southern Okanagan Secondary School (SOSS) 2003 alumni. Upon graduation I was honoured to receive the Nick Jones Memorial Scholarship. I believe the Scholarship Program is a wonderful part of the school leaving process. Financially it assists so many students to make the step into post-secondary education to attain the skills and knowledge needed for adult life. Since my graduation I have obtained an Entertainment Business Management certificate, an undergraduate degree in Social Sciences and a Masters of Business Administration.
In 2014 I cofounded a company that created a restaurant and sports club in downtown Kelowna. Central Kitchen & Bar and Central Sports Club have been embraced by the city. As a result we were recognized in 2017/2018 as Best Employer Kelowna and won the B.C. Best Small Business award for Best Employer 2017. In addition to my career in hospitality, I have been fortunate to enter the world of real estate investment which has always been a passion of mine. I am a firm believer in diversifying your interests throughout your life in efforts to continuously challenge yourself and always continue to learn.
Through hard work and the encouragement of my amazing girlfriend (above) Isabella and my family, I am grateful to be passionately living an exciting life. I’ve learned along the way that happiness and success is also about giving back. I continue to be a part of Oliver…. the town that raised me by joining my family every June to honour a very deserving young grad who has grown in character and perseverance.
We donate to an Inspiration Award to help a student who has overcome obstacles through difficult circumstances to make great accomplishments. Thank you to the Scholarship Committee and all the dedicated people that make it happen for the graduates each year.
Anti-park petition won’t change council’s mind
By ROY WOOD
Three or four dozen people gathered outside Osoyoos town hall this afternoon to ask council to reconsider its decision not to support a call for a regional referendum on the national park question.
But Mayor Sue McKortoff made it pretty clear that such a reconsideration is not on the table.
Dustin Stephens, who drives a pickup adorned with signs demanding a referendum asking South Okanagan residents their opinion on whether there should be a national park reserve in the valley, acted as a spokesman for the group.
An ardent opponent of the park proposal, Stephens said: “We have to try to do something. … Our goal is to try to get council to change their minds.”
The demonstrators milled about, many with anti-park and pro-referendum placards, and lined up to sign a petition seeking the reconsideration.
At a meeting earlier this month, council rejected a request from Boundary-Similkameen MLA Linda Larson asking for a resolution stating: “That Council direct staff to prepare a letter requesting the Federal Government to undertake a referendum in the South Okanagan-Similkameen area on the creation of the National Park Reserve.”
Oliver council had earlier voted 3-2 in favour of such a resolution.
Osoyoos council, which has been on the record for years as being in favour of the park, unanimously rejected Larson’s request.
In an interview following today’s council meeting, McKortoff said: “I can’t say that I can see (council reconsidering).”
The mayor pointed out that discussion of a South Okanagan National Park has been going on since 2002 and it’s time to make a decision.
She said the recent online request for public input was “not a referendum, but it’s a way of making your views known.”
McKortoff said council “felt a little blindsided by (Larson’s) request to go against what we had always said. … The last three councils have said that we are in favour of a national park.”
The mayor shared a quote she heard from a Parks Canada official in a recent telephone call: “Referendums are not part of the federal park establishment process.”
Note: ODN did not take this picture which truly portrays the number of people not to happy with a recent council decision.
WorkBC abandons Osoyoos, council not happy
Osoyoos will fire off a displeased letter to the provincial minister in charge of WorkBC after the organization announced it is going to “offer better services for people” by moving its operation to Oliver.
In a report to council today, chief administrative officer Barry Romanko said: “Local employers benefited from having a local office in Osoyoos. There is a need to receive clarity from the provincial government and the … contractor on how services in Osoyoos are being improved with the closure of the Osoyoos office.”
The Open Door Group formerly contracted the services of WorkBC in Oliver and Osoyoos. It is being replaced by a new contractor, Maximus, which will operate just one centre for the two towns at Oliver Employment Services Centre.
In a notice to employers announcing the closure of the Osoyoos office, WorkBC says: “Beginning April 1, 2019, WorkBC will offer better services for people who need support to re-enter the workforce, access training opportunities and find good jobs.”
Councillor Myers Bennett said the move will be a hardship on Osoyoos residents who often need to go to WorkBC several times when seeking a job or training.
Said Mayor Sue McKortoff: “I was horrified when WorkBC emailed us.”
Town supports appreciation day for Mounties
On a more positive note, council agreed to send a letter in support of a proposal from a Vernon group to declare February 1 as RCMP Appreciation Day.
A letter from the RCMP Day Vernon Committee pointed out that the police force was created on February 1, 1920, making next year its 100th anniversary. Manitoba is the only province so far to declare the appreciation day.
“We are a group of Canadian citizens … (seeking) to acknowledge February 1 each year as a day to honour and recognize the men and women of the RCMP for their dedication and service,” the letter says.
It asks the town to provide a letter of support for the idea, which along with others will be forwarded to the province to convince it to implement the appreciation day.
Policy to encourage wider variety of street food
Mobile food vendors will have an easier time working through the town licensing processes and a wider variety of food options will be available to tourists and residents, under a revised policy approved by council today.
The new policy is partly a result of the dearth of street food vendors in town during last year’s tourist season.
According to a report from senior planner Don McArthur, “The (Official Community Plan) emphasizes the importance of creating a diverse and vibrant downtown. One way to achieve (these goals) is to enable a variety of food options.”
The policy will require that “applicants must describe how their proposed food offerings will complement (not compete with) existing options.”
The new policy specifies several areas where portable food vendors will be allowed, including: Lions Park; Sun Bowl Arena; The Legion; the baseball/softball diamonds; Desert Park; Pioneer Walkway; Cottonwood Park; Kinsmen Park; and Goodman Park.
As well, they would be permitted on streets just off Main Street west of the Watermark and on Main Street south of the Shoppers/Boston Pizza corner.
Some areas specifically not allowed include: Gyro Park; Jack Shaw Gardens; Veterans Park; North Cottonwood Park; trails; and beach accesses.
as reported by Roy Wood
By ROY WOOD
A request for a rezoning to allow a pot shop in the Buy-Low shopping centre brings to four the number of recreational cannabis retailers at various stages of approval in the town.
The latest application, from Rachel Lloyd, came to the town council table today seeking rezoning to open a cannabis store in the two vacant units adjacent to the Dollar Store at the Gateway Square shopping centre.
A report from planning director Gina MacKay recommended approval. “Staff is of the opinion that this location is suitable for the proposed use and will enable a new business to be established in the town.”
MacKay pointed out that the storefronts in questions have been vacant since the shopping centre opened.
Meanwhile, an application for an outlet attached to the rear of the Owl Pub and Liquor Store hit a bit of roadblock today as it came to council for third reading.
Councillor CJ Rhodes cited concerns raised at a pubic hearing around access to parking and customer safety because of nearby truck unloading dock. Council decided to table third reading pending a staff report addressing those issues.
Under town regulations, all proposals for cannabis retailing must to come to council for “site specific” zoning.
After second reading of the rezoning bylaw, it goes to a public hearing where members of the public may weigh in. After that it goes back to council for third reading approval.
At that point the applicant must approach the provincial Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB) for the appropriate licences. Only then will council give final approval.
Two earlier applications are currently in the hands of the LCRB, having passed three readings at the town level.
They are at 8304 72nd Avenue in the old Osoyoos Signs building and 8322 Main Street across the street from O’Delights Asian restaurant.
By ROY WOOD
Downtown Osoyoos could be dotted with sidewalk cafes this summer if council adopts a staff-recommended plan to loosen the rules around such open-air eateries.
Senior planner Don McArthur told council this morning that a change in policy to allow restaurants to operate sidewalk patios “should increase vibrancy in the community” and still be in compliance with both the Official Community Plan and the recently completed Town Centre Renewal Plan (TCRP).
Current regulations limit sidewalk use by restaurants and cafes to just four tables with a total of eight chairs.
Enlarged sidewalk patios were specifically identified in the TCRP as a way of increasing the appeal of the downtown.
A new policy would allow restaurateurs to apply to construct patios in front of their establishments. They would need to provide a 1.5-metre walkway for pedestrians.
In the event that the patio and the walkway could not be accommodated on the available sidewalk area, the applicant would be allowed to encroach onto the adjacent street for the walkway.
McArthur said that the two or three parking spaces that might be affected by such an intrusion “could then be utilized by small cars, bicycles or motorcycles.”
Councillor CJ Rhodes pointed out that “parking will be the most controversial aspect” of the proposal. He suggested that a fee proposed in McArthur’s report would not be not appropriate since the parking spots will simply be repurposed.
Council directed staff to come back to a full council meeting, likely April 1, with a proposed new policy.
McArthur indicated that the goal is to have the new policy in place for this year’s summer tourist season.
At the end of Part Two, I said that I don’t think Trump will leave if he loses the 2020 election.
During the 2016 campaign (on 19 October 2016) and before the actual election (always held, by law, on the “Tuesday following the first Monday in November), Trump refused to commit to accepting the result of the upcoming presidential elections.
After winning the election, Trump tweeted. “… I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally”.
In September 2017, Trump advisor Roger Stone was asked about the prospect of impeachment and responded, “You will have a spasm of violence in this country, an insurrection like you’ve never seen.” In addition, there was a YouTube video “Roger Stone Prepares for Civil War after Trump is Removed from Office” showing him – and others – at a range. Mind you, Stone’s trial date has been set for November.
Following the 2018 mid-term elections when Republicans lost the House, Trump said, “The Republicans don’t win and that’s because of potentially illegal votes.” He described these illegal voters as people who changed their clothes and voted multiple times.
Trump himself at a closed-door meeting of GOP donors at his Mar-a-Lago resort on 3 March 2019, said, “He’s now president for life. And look, he was able to do that. I think it’s great. Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot some day.” Trump was referring to the Chinese government decision to abolish term limits and allow President Xi Jinping to rule indefinitely.
87% of Republicans support Trump. 47% of Republicans believe he won the popular vote in 2016. 68% of Republicans believe that millions of illegal immigrants voted in 2016. 73% of Republicans believe that voter fraud happens somewhat or very often.
52% of Republicans support postponing the 2020 election until the voter fraud ‘problem’ is solved.
Not all autocrats come to power as the result of a coup. Some transform their (legitimate) term into an autocratic reality by taking several (legal) steps in preparation:
Politicize law enforcement. Criminalize the opposition. Attack the media. Get cosy with the military. Undermine the electoral process.
There is ample evidence that all are underway.
Recently, Trump declared an emergency – the President can do that – and said that he would fund his southern wall by taking money from other programs. The (Democrat-controlled) House overwhelmingly passed a resolution to terminate this emergency declaration. The Senate agreed (59 to 41) because 12 Republican senators voted with the Democrat senators not necessarily because they don’t support Trump but primarily because they believe that Congress decides how taxpayer money gets spent. However, without a two-thirds majority, the President immediately tweet-shouted, “VETO!” for that resolution, and the fight can only be continued in the courts. Meanwhile, his emergency declaration stands.
So, if the 2020 election proceeds – an open question – and if Trump loses – not a foregone conclusion – and if he declares that loss to be the result of voter fraud – quite likely – can he then declare an emergency that requires him to remain in office until there is no more voter fraud?
Should you care?
Spring Break then Easter
Circled dates are student holidays
Boxed dates are non-instructional days
Grey boxed dates – early dismissal (Inquiry Time)
Thanks to the Tue-El-Nuit School website.
Only SD#53 site in Oliver that had this information
What is spring break March 18 (no school) to April 1 (students return)
Today a question.
What are we going to do beyond having a frank discussion about violence around the world and the murder of innocent people being killed?
Upfront, I don’t have the answers but I hope to provide a measure of understanding with a point of view.
It was about forty years ago, we heard the news everyday about left wing fundamentalists and fringe sects of the communist movement blowing up car bombs and killing people. Before that the endless bloodshed of the Arab, Israeli conflict and the tragic events of Northern Ireland. Everyday we heard the left wing terrorists did this and that. It wasn’t our problem, it was over there or in South and Central America. I believe ignoring these events was mistake number one.
At the time many on the social democratic left were complaining, about the word “left” being used. It had a mental image for sure and served the more conservative interests in a society of people who didn’t understand the difference between radicals and moderate versions of the left. Some say, well we overcame that. Not so, life and circumstance merely changed the perspective of life.
Radical Muslim Groups and radical fundamentalist conservative groups and right wing religious zealots decided it was their turn to change the world.
We had and have this playing out before our eyes now.
We have some of this activity happening in Canada and the United States because we didn’t become involved at the grassroots level when it started as someone else’s problem.
Today the right wing conservative and religious movements are complaining they are being unfairly characterized on the news, it’s easy to say what goes round comes round but that won’t solve the problem. It is high time to examine ourselves and ask are we with our attitudes spreading a verbal infection that is gripping the world? Face it all this hate, ignorance, racism, secular mistrust, and fear are feelings within ourselves when we feel, as a society we are not living up to our own expectations.
Here is a place we all might start. Each of us stand in front of the mirror and tell the person you see the truth. Ask am I part of the problem? Am I living up to my own expectations? Am I part of the fearful or the fear mongering? Do I find it easy to hate people I don’t know. No we don’t all feel everyone of these emotions. But if we ask and answer the questions honestly individually we can start to make a difference collectively, if as a world population we have a discussion and decide to take the actions needed in our own backyard we can put an end to this murder and violence.
Impossible you say?
Well putting a man on the moon was impossible in 1960 but they did it in 1969. Nothing is impossible if we put our mind to it.
Green – protected areas
Yellow – land of indigenous peoples
Where you see a name: Princeton to Osoyoos, Oliver to Summerland – population densities in municipalities
Grey/Brown – the vast majority of land
Now take a look at one slice and ask – why did PC not seek this huge chunk of land for a Reserve ?
Ten reasons for a National Park Reserve
1. Establish national park area managed co-operatively with local indigenous nations – Osoyoos and Lower Similkameen Indian Bands
2. Set a boundary around lands in the South Okanagan-Similkameen to restore lost eco-systems
3. Mitigate climate change
4. Preserve 17% of Canada’s land and freshwater
5. To protect Bio Diversity
6. To provide an opportunity for Canadians to experience the outdoors and the environment
7. To promote sustainable development
8. Protect species at risk
9. Establish a Reserve not a Park at this time
10. To honour those who came before us like the family that owned the Mac and Fitz packinghouse
The South Okanagan-Similkameen is where the northern edge of the Great Basin reaches into British Columbia, in the extreme south of the Interior Dry Plateau natural region.
This is one of 39 regions identified by Parks Canada’s national parks system plan as a distinctive component of the national landscape, but is not yet represented by a national park. From both national and provincial perspectives, this is an area of high conservation value and an excellent candidate area for Parks Canada to represent this region.
The goals of establishing a national park are to:
•protect the diversity of vegetation and landscape features of representative ecosystems;
•maintain the ecological integrity of wildlife habitat and plant species; and
•provide opportunities for quality visitor experiences, such as recreational activities and the presentation of natural and cultural heritage.
About the region
Within rolling hills and sweeping valleys, the Okanagan is one of the most ecologically-diverse regions of Canada. By protecting this area, we will help support the recovery of over 30 federally listed species at risk, and over 60 provincially listed species, including American badgers, flammulated owls, yellow breasted chat, desert night snakes, and western rattlesnakes.
The shrub steppe ecosystem found in the interior of British Columbia, including the South Okanagan-Similkameen, is recognized as one of the country’s most endangered natural systems. These rare pockets of semi-arid desert are the only occurrence of this ecosystem in Canada; they form the northern tip of North America’s Great Basin desert. By establishing a national park reserve in the South Okanagan-Similkameen, Parks Canada will protect and represent this rare and endangered ecosystem in the national park system.
It represents an area of significant ecological, geographic and cultural importance with a wide range of recreational and tourism opportunities like hiking, camping, bird watching and mountain biking.
The federal, provincial and Syilx/Okanagan governments agree that the South Okanagan–Similkameen offers potential for the establishment of a national park reserve. National parks and national park reserves represent the very best that Canada has to offer and tell stories of who we are, including the history, cultures, and contributions of Indigenous peoples. The proposed national park reserve would enable the inspiring South Okanagan-Similkameen landscape to be shared with local residents, British Columbians, Canadians and visitors from around the world.
The natural and cultural values of the South Okanagan-Similkameen have sustained First Nations for thousands of years. A national park reserve is a unique opportunity for Parks Canada and First Nations to work together to achieve conservation and economic objectives.
Creating protected areas
The Government of Canada is committed to expanding our system of protected areas and protecting Canada’s biodiversity. Canada is committed to conserve at least 17 percent of our country’s land and freshwater and 10 percent of coastal and marine waters through a network of parks, protected and conserved areas, and other effective area-based conservation measures by 2020.
National parks and national park reserves represent the very best that Canada has to offer and tell stories of who we are, including the history, cultures, and contributions of Indigenous peoples.
The principal difference between a national park and a national park reserve is that the term “reserve” is used to recognize that there are unresolved claims of Aboriginal rights in the area. Indigenous peoples can continue to participate in traditional land uses and spiritual activities, and may be involved in cooperative management with Parks Canada.
Canada’s network of protected areas play an important role in helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change by protecting and restoring healthy, resilient ecosystems and contributing to the recovery of species at risk. As climate change continues, it is important to take protective measures to safeguard this significant and diverse region in B.C. interior as a national park reserve. As climate change continues, many desert species will be pushed northward, and potentially upslope, into the shrub steppe ecosystem of the South Okanagan-Similkameen.
Parks Canada will work with the Syilx/Okanagan, the Government of British Columbia, communities, conservation groups, private businesses, ranchers, and tourism and municipal organizations to conserve and protect the natural and cultural heritage of this special place, and to see this national park reserve become a reality to enjoy and use for generations to come.
Source: Parks Canada
The Ministry of Transportation & Infrastructure is undertaking Flood Mitigation works on Secrest Hill Rd.
This work will require the closure of Secrest Hill Road, To All Traffic, from Wednesday March 20thth through Wednesday April 10th , from Pampas Grass Way to Test Orchard Road.
•Access will be accommodated for local residents as follows:
◦To Pampas Grass Way from Highway 97 or Horsetail Road
◦To Test Orchard Rd from Willowbrook Road.
Thank you for your patience during this important work. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call the undersigned.
Ministry of Transportation & Infrastructure
ODN concerned about “quick melt” and lots of water in the next three weeks as temperatures rise to early summer temps.
Next week room temperatures expected outside. Air conditioners ?
In the last two days we looked at
Shuttleworth Creek in OK Falls
Vaseux Creek at Gallagher Lake
Park Rill at Secrest
Reed Creek at Cheryl’s Corner
Wolfcub at Oliver/OIB
Tinhorn Creek at Rd 9
Testlinda Creek at Rd 16
Inkaneep (Nk’Mip Creek) into Osoyoos Lake
I remember when my children were at play, having four girls meant lots of playing house or even shop-keeping. Fairly quiet games until someone decided they were not being treated fairly. The grumbles and whining would start and gradually increase to bickering and then shouting. This was when I interfered, got them all into coats and hats and made them play outside for an hour or two.
It didn’t matter what season it was, if they had energy to burn off they could do it outside. Dave had built a jungle gym in our back yard, with swing and slide attached, this was always a good plaything but they also played many games using rocks, leaves, twigs and various things they found outside as pretend objects, the imagination was as large as their understanding of things.
Hours of play usually meant dirty hands and knees and much scrubbing of same was performed every night before bed. Once into bed sleep came quickly as the cold, fresh air had tired them out.
Fast forward to my grandchildren. The eldest three were close together and would play all sorts of noisy games until they were ushered out of the house to play outdoors. It was a while before my other daughters married and started producing children and for the first few years they were a noisy as the older ones, then something changed to quieten them down, computer games came along.
For the past fifteen years or so there is little noise when we go to visit any of our daughters, the kids are playing their various games. They come up for air, say a quick hello to us then it’s eyes down for the next move. They all love their different devices and it is a wonderful baby sitter but I feel that kids are missing a big part of their life by not playing outdoors.
When I was a kid, yes…way back then…, I spent hardly any time indoors.
I loved to read from a very early age and I also had a jigsaw and various other games, however, I soon learned never to say I had nothing to do. Grandma had a cure for boredom. Out would come the cleaning supplies and I would have to sit at the newspaper covered table and clean the brassware. What a soul destroying job that was. Rub on the polish, wipe it off again then rub like the wind until gran thought it was good enough. She had an old toothbrush for getting into tight corners and this had to be handled carefully or it would splatter the cream all over your face. Once the rubbing with a cloth was finished, I had to do a final polish with newpaper, this apparently added sparkle.
Once I was done and considerably filthy I would have to roll all the dirty newspapers into ‘faggots’. These were tightly rolled and would be used to start a new fire. Considerably cheaper than kindling, gran thought an hour of rolling faggots was suitable punishment for many a childhood misdeed.
Being seven years younger than my brother I never had anyone to play with indoors so it was out in the street to find friends. In our area a child was never asked into another home to play. It was a daily event to call on a friend and ask their mom if ‘so and so’ could come out to play. The door would then be closed and you would stand outside till your pal was appropriately dressed for outdoors and then the two of us would make the rounds until we had four or five people to play with.
A popular game was skipping rope and learning all the jingles that went with the various steps, playing with two or more balls that were juggled against a wall was another favourite, again with accompanying jingles. We would spend hours drawing coloured designs on our wooden tops which would then be sent spinning with a leather whip. Simple games but a great way to pass a few hours with friends.
In summer we would wander far and wide with a big bottle of water and some jam sandwiches. We would go to various swimming holes, tuck our dresses into our underpants and wade for hours. We would make daisy chains and pick bluebells, sometimes chase cows round a field. Hide and seek and many other games kept us busy all summer. We would wander home before the street lamps came on as this was the curfew for all of us. It was a carefree life and a wonderful way to grow up.
Winter weather didn’t halt our outdoor play. This was about eight years after the war and there were still air raid shelters located at the end of lots of streets. These were dark and stinky but had built in benches and it was our “secret” hide-out. The last thing my gran would say as I went out the door was ‘don’t go near the air raid shelter’, but as she never came to check, I just ignored the order.
Every house had candles available as all homes had an electric and gas meter which required coins to give you a certain amount of power. As you were often left in the dark for a few minutes putting in another coin, candles were kept in convenient places to be lit at times like this. This meant that we could take turns stealing a candle end from home to keep our little hideaway lit.
We really did nothing exciting sitting in our stinky abode but the flickering light and the fact that no adults were there made it seem thrilling. When I was about ten the shelter was sadly torn down however, we soon found new accommodation.
The field where the air raid shelter once stood was going to be developed into new housing. Soon, trucks of various lengths of wood were unloaded and the wood covered with big tarps. We would crawl under the tarps and sit inside the wooden stacks, safe from the rain and nosy parents. As the new homes were being built, they provided new territory for our exploration. Ropes would be swung over beams and we all took turns at being Tarzan, complete with blood curdling cry. Windows going in meant that workmen would leave cans of putty about, this was great stuff and could be formed into any shape you wanted.
We never thought to vandalize but took full advantage of the partly built rooms, I bet the workmen wondered what had happened when they arrived to find crudely built tables and chairs, all sorts of broken crockery that we had made into our plates on which sat food shaped out of putty. The dirt outdoors would have dandelions and other weeds planted into makeshift garden beds that we had made out of sawed off planks of wood.
Imagination was the name of the game and I think today’s children are missing out on a great way of play. I wonder what they do when they do not have games available, do they have the imagination to entertain themselves? I do hope so, childhood is preparation for the adult world and unfortunately, what they seem to be playing doesn’t seem to be preparing them for what lies ahead.
Here is my effort to give a somewhat balanced view of each side of the National Park Reserve debate. Perhaps you could also get an ardent ‘No Sider’ to similarly write up their version of the pros and cons. Hopefully you can screen for personal attacks and get both sides to focus on the actual issues.
I think that the strongest arguments for the park are that it offers federal funding for the protection of our fragile ecosystem and threatened species and the chance to supplement are already strong tourist economy with some eco-tourism The South Okanogan is the last large unique ecosystem within Canada which is not protected by a national park. Designation of an NPR helps reach Canada’s international obligations to preserve a larger percentage of our land base, further protects against development of currently private lands and helps fight global warming.
The ‘no side’ is very distrustful and antagonistic towards federal government intervention in the region. They regard our rural areas as their own backyard and value unrestricted access for both industry and recreation-for ranching, for hunting, quading, partying, etc. Many ranchers and hunters in particular are very sensitive to environmental values and protect what we value. We don’t need federal intervention to help with this
The No Side sees all conflicting land-use issues as having been resolved in the 2000 LRMP. The Yes side sees an evolution in thinking of how to protect our region, particularly through the very significant compromises contained the 2011 compromise proposal on the national Park and in the more recent provincial intentions paper process. The no side sees Parks Canada as currently rushing towards a predetermined decision ahead of the completion of its current consultative process.
The yes side sees the federal and provincial governments and local First Nations finally coming together in agreement. The current NPR proposal represents a series of compromises arrived at over the almost 20 years consultation and debate on the topic. Over that time the geographic extent of the park has been significantly reduced from the original proposal- for example to exclude the snowy area valued for hunting and the Vaseux and White Lake areas where there is already a lot of private protection through land trusts etc. The ‘No side’ is suspicious that representations as to the preservation of existing uses such as ranching and helicopter training will be honoured. No doubt ranching within the park will probably be subject to more vigorous enforcement of environmental regulations than is currently the case.
Some on the ‘Yes Side’ have overstated the economic spin offs from the park. Similarly some of the No Side exaggerate their argument, fearing that our park will become like Banff, seriously overwhelming our existing highway infrastructure and tourist facilities. More likely the reality will be a middle ground – a much more modest park achieving an appropriate balance between making portions of the park accessible to the public for low impact recreation such as hiking, biking, maybe horse riding; with increased resources to enhance protection of the rest of the park area; and the development of interpretive center‘s to celebrate both our indigenous and ranching heritages The preservation of Kobau as a dark sky preserve for star gazing excites the yes side.
The yes side sees the park as a recognition of aboriginal rights and title in the area, including the opportunity for First Nations co-management of the park. The no side resents the preservation of aboriginal hunting rights, seeing themselves as having similar long established traditional rights.
Generally, both sides have been passionate in their arguments. Unfortunately, in many instances the debate has pitted neighbor against neighbor. But it does appear that we are finally coming to a compromise solution that probably won’t make anyone entirely happy, but which hopefully we can all live with.
Thanks to Peter Beckett for sending the photos
Sgt. Jason Bayda
Osoyoos Fire Department
All the volunteers involved in this rescue.
“Osoyoos police and fire staff were involved in the rescue of dogs that were running on the ice this afternoon before they fell through.
Neighbours who saw the incident called 911 and soon the rescuers were after the animals.
One sank before the men could get to it but they did manage to rescue the second dog, a black pit bull.
The animal was hypothermic but alive when they got it to shore. It was taken to the vet.”
*Ali Fraser is the owner of the dogs involved.
Confirmed by police and fire officials
Lemmings are prolific little rodents, living mostly in Sweden and Norway. They are about the size of a field mouse and live on vegetation. Twice a year they raise a brood of from 5 to 8. That means a huge population explosion will develop. About every four years something causes them to head for the ocean. Some may take months or even more than a year to get there, some die on the way. Of those who do arrive at the ocean, many will plunge into the sea and drown.
Widespread is the idea that the lemmings are driven to suicide by a built in drive to reduce the population. Apparently, this is not the case. Food shortage does drive them to seek better pastures, since they are vegetarian. They are also capable swimmers and may ‘dream’ of better things across the water. When it is the ocean they plunge into none of them succeed. It’s a dream that became a nightmare.
On occasion I have detected a valid, innate urge to seek something more fulfilling, more meaningful, more satisfying to my hunger for significance. But I have also sought them where they cannot be found. Meaning and significance in life is bound up in our relationships. If genuine, helpful relationships are missing we will seek fulfillment in unfruitful places – and maybe ‘drown’. The positive point is that even if all else fails, we can be sure that God loves each one of us and can direct us to goals that will be satisfying and meaningful.
May you be blessed with good relationships,
The NPR consultation period is over. Time to reflect. Time to assess what steps are needed by the Yes side and No side.
Had a loud and interesting chat with a supporter of the NPR at the Oliver Arena when making a delivery of some historical pictures shown on ODN.
That person knows who he is and I respect his views but I must admit it took me almost an hour to get over the conversation.
1. That ODN was not objective.
2. He like much content on ODN but disliked a change of objectivity of the Publisher, me.
3. He indicated that he thought more people would comment if not “attacked” for their views on this divisive subject. ( I told him the # of comments has risen )
4. I asked him to be the one I have sought for years to intelligently write the article I am looking for – ten reasons for a national park and all the reasons that a NP is not a good idea.
5. He laughed at me. He had made up his mind. He could not tell me one reason for a national park other than his visits to NP in other parts of Canada.
6. I asked were those NP’s – designed and built in the middle or on the side of a large residential, cattle ranching, tourist mecca, grape and wine, fruit industry with huge amounts of wilderness land already protected. I did not get an answer.
7. I left the conversation abruptly as is NOT my practice. But this person being a former teacher was treating me like an eleven year old – something at 72 I am not accustomed to.
I invite this person to make a rebuttal. I will not comment further…. to him. I doubt he will reply.
8. This is an issue to divide a family or a friendship. I have tried in the last 15 years to be as objective on this issue until ‘my money was being spent, secret agents hired by the feds and newspapers bought off’ that I said enough is enough. This is BS. Call me a Willowbrook redneck, call me a Secrest hillbilly – it’s an honour to be included with an intelligent group of people that do not want to lose their rights and have always protected the local environment. What are those people asking for?? – democracy – a referendum on a very important VAST land matter in their back yard.
9. Hey Clarence – maybe pipe up and tell us how you and the OIB majority think about a National Park.
Public consultations on proposed national park reserve in the South Okanagan-Similkameen concluded
“What We Heard” report to be made public in coming monthsCanada’s national parks and national park reserves are some of the most beautiful places on earth. Not only do our parks draw visitors from around the world, they help protect Canada’s distinct and diverse flora and fauna. We rely on nature and nature relies on us to protect it.
From December 10, 2018 to March 15, 2019, members of the public were invited to share their views and ideas on the proposed boundary for the proposed new national park reserve in the South Okanagan-Similkameen and provide input on key aspects for consideration in the management of the lands.
The Governments of Canada and British Columbia along with the Syilx/Okanagan Nation would like to thank local residents, stakeholders, and the Canadian public, who participated in the consultations. Parks Canada held 36 meetings with stakeholder groups representing a variety of interests and received around 2,750 submissions as part of the online consultations.
In addition, the Osoyoos Indian Band and the Lower Similkameen Indian Band held discussions with members of Indigenous communities through ongoing relationships.
While the formal public consultation period has concluded, Parks Canada will continue to work with specific stakeholder groups and private landholders.
A “What we Heard” report will be prepared and shared with the public in the coming months once all feedback has been collected and reviewed. The report will include a summary and analysis of the results of the consultation, which will inform future recommendations regarding the proposed national park reserve.
Can Putin ensure the second-term re-election of Donald Trump?
It’s not going to take as much effort in 2020 as it took in 2016. For one, there is almost no doubt that Trump will be the GOP candidate. No need to win the primaries; just focus on the election.
Impeachment you say? Won’t happen. Can’t happen. For three reasons: one, if some rookie representative moves too early it will fail; two, because Speaker Pelosi wants to wait for the Mueller report and other investigations (SDNY in particular); and three, because it needs Republican support – and that support does not exist.
Meanwhile, the Democrats are imploding. More than a dozen candidates. Strong policy division between left and centre. Serious multiple faux pas by inexperienced, newly-elected representatives. And since they now control the House, an inordinate expenditure of effort to exercise oversight.
Besides, if it becomes necessary, you could just insert a billionaire independent candidate to split the vote because the Trump base – not less than 38% – is secure. There are nine declared independent candidates already but Schultz who has not yet declared is the only one who fits this description.
And if Trump does not win the election, it still won’t matter. Trump cannot afford to leave office.
There is a Justice Department document that – coincidentally – says that you cannot haul a sitting President into court. But that document was never meant to protect the President. It was originally written to force the resignation of Vice-President Agnew. In 1979, Agnew was under suspicion of criminal conspiracy, bribery, extortion, and tax fraud. He eventually pled no contest to a single count of tax evasion and resigned. Essential to forcing his resignation was this internal Justice Department document that permitted the indictment of a sitting Vice-President – it wasn’t intended to protect the President, it was intended to put pressure on a Vice-President who was taking cash bribes in his office. Unfortunately – and coincidentally – that same document included the opinion that a sitting President could not be indicted. That document has been held as gospel ever since. Trump lives under that protection as long as he is in office. He cannot afford to leave office before the expiry of the statute of limitations – about 10 years in his cases. Two down, eight to go.
Trump’s family and friends are being indicted – and indictments will continue. His son and son-in-law will be indicted. As long as the charges are under federal law, President Trump can pardon the convicted. He cannot afford to leave office before he pardons his friends and, in particular, his family.
Most of the money invested in the Trump organization is Russian money. As long as he can protect those investments, make money for the investors, and make their lives easier, he will be allowed to use their money. He cannot afford to leave office and settle his debts. He cannot afford to cross his investors. Besides, he is in a very good position as President to protect and further the money-making endeavours of the Trump organization and the political aims of Putin.
Three examples: One. Instead of moving the crumbling FBI headquarters out of Washington-centre, he just ordered that it be knocked down and re-built where it is. That way no one can build a luxury hotel to compete with the nearby Trump property. Two. Give your friends and children top-secret security clearances even though your own intelligence organizations object. As President you can do that. Why would you? Now your children and your companies and their companies have access to a wealth of classified data perhaps even including the products of The Five Eyes. This is a huge business advantage and it supports Putin’s desire to drive a wedge among the Western allies. Three. Provide US nuclear power technology to Saudi-Arabia through a company owned by his son-in-law. Illegal but doable as long as you are President.
Now why does a country with so much oil need nuclear power? Let’s see … who belongs to the nuclear weapons club? US, Russia, UK, France, Israel, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and Israel. Maybe Iran. But not Saudi Arabia.
Can Putin ensure the second-term re-election of Donald Trump? Wrong question.
Will Trump leave if he loses? That’s the real question. I don’t think he will.
Do you care?