Results of flooding in May – when Reed Creek and Tinhorn Creek were bursting at the seams.
Below some changes and improvement on Road 9 near old Haynes Packinghouse. Much more needed according to local residents.
The highway has reopened, according to DriveBC at 9:20 pm about six hours after the accident.
South Okanagan Traffic Services says the four-car wreck started when a southbound Mazda 3 was rear-ended by a pickup truck, which led to a chain reaction crash.
The Mazda occupants — a 36-year-old female and her 6-year-old daughter — were seriously injured.
Witnesses who have not been interviewed are requested to contact South Okanagan Traffic Services at 250-499-2250.
Picture: Picture and story from Castamet
Choice is a present moment event. If I don’t think I am choosing my way through the day I am mistaken. We choose all day long. Many of the choices I make are from habit so are not conscious choices. Hmmm? Sometimes a choice for one thing means a choice against another thing. Sometimes a choice brings with it another, like when I pick up one end of the stick, the other end comes with it; Covey (consequences). Oh oh
Ever see one of those movies with the alternate endings? At one point in the story a different choice is made and the whole ending changes. Life is like that, played out in continuous response to continuous choice. When someone is single-mindedly focused on getting a certain thing, they most often get it. Why? Because they choose their way toward it, increment by increment. What would you like to have?
Since we choose our way through our days, what does it mean when I am having a bad day? Do I simply need to choose to have a good day instead and presto I’m there? Wait a minute here. That means I can’t blame anyone for anything. But I’m used to spreading the blame around. Don’t you know what that *&%@ said/did? And then there is that Pollyanna we all know who, somehow, seems to be cheery most of the time. Grrr
Some choices are ‘if A, then not B’. Like when I choose about my time. They ain’t makin’ any more of that stuff, so when I choose A then B is not available at that time. Yet, if I delegate B to a trusted colleague, maybe both can be accommodated. There is only one of me and one of you, so if it is going to take both of us, then, if I really want what I say I want, then the choice is all or none. No pressure
Some are so happy and successful and float through life with a joyful grace. If they do that by the choices they make, how can I do the same? I say the entry to any better choice is to first notice my present choices. Notice how my thoughts affect my actions and the results that then flow. By choosing my thoughts I design my quality of life. I choose happy. What choice will you make today? What old choice will you toss?
Okanagan Falls Elementary School
Principal: Karen Sinclair
Cawston Primary School
Principal: Shannon Miller
Similkameen Elementary Secondary School
Principal: Cate Turner
Vice Principal: Naryn Searcy
Oliver Elementary School
Principal: Jason McAllister
Vice Principal: Amanda Palmer
Tuc El Nuit Elementary School
Principal: Will Eaton
Southern Okanagan Secondary School
Principal: Tracy Harrington
Vice Principal: Stacey Smith
Osoyoos Elementary School
Principal: Dave Foster
Vice Principal: Amanda-Lynn Jones
Osoyoos Secondary School
Principal: Scott Tremblay
Vice Principal: Bradley Burns
Bev Young – School Superintendent says she is hopeful all teaching positions will be filled prior to the first day of classes. Six teachers are still being sought in the district.
According to the “Oliver STP” Weather Station located at our Public Works Yard… we have not recorded a drop of precipitation for a while. We are on day 67 right now! Almost ten weeks.
The last recorded day was on June 19th where 0.2 mm was recorded and we only saw three different rain falls in June totalling 5.8 mm for the month.
Town of Oliver
KELOWNA, BC – BC Tree Fruits Cooperative (BCTF), comprised of over 430 grower families from across the Okanagan, Similkameen and Creston Valleys, announces the closure of their Osoyoos facility. For over 80 years, this facility has been utilized for the receiving, packing and storage of the contracted growers’ fruit. In addition, BC Tree Fruits operates a small retail market within the facility.
After careful review and consideration by BCTF Senior Management, the Board of Directors (comprised of 10 Cooperative contracted growers) approved the decision to move forward with the closure of the facility. With multiple costly upgrades required to the aging building, the decision to consolidate operations in the South region to the Oliver facility is projected to provide long term savings that will positively impact the Cooperative.
“On behalf of all our growers, we continue to be strategic in our long-term plans to operate our organization and all facilities most efficiently with the one goal in mind – maximizing grower revenues,” says BCTF Chief Executive Officer Stan Swales. “The decision to move forward with this closure was made with the long-term success of the Cooperative in mind.”
Currently the South region has a shared employee seniority list of approximately 250 employees. All of these employees will continue to be scheduled in Oliver and will not see a significant change to their normal scheduled activity.
The facility will receive apples this fall. Once all the fruit is received this year, the facility will officially cease daily operations. The Oliver packinghouse will undergo multiple upgrades in both technology and equipment to handle the increased packing needs beginning with the 2018 crop. After over thirty years of operation, the retail market will close September 9, 2017. Future plans for the facility and property are currently being reviewed by Senior Management and the Board of Directors.
Asked to comment – President of the BC Fruit Growers Association Fred Steele:
From: Gordon & Kathie Kirby
250 Road 9
To: Karla Kozakevich
Chair , Regional District of Okanagan Smimilkameen
Re: Spring flooding of 2017
We have lived at this address for 50 years since 1967, no flooding can compare to this year.
The notes here are our thoughts on flooding and silting of creeks below Rail Road Right of Way at road 9 starting about May 10, 2017. We refer to the causes and situations leading to our area flooding from these water sources:
1-Okanagan River brought to highest level in many years raising the initial ground water table level and hindering the ability of the large culvert north of bridge on road 9 to evacuate our area flood waters.
2-Reed Creek: This creek and other creeks mentioned are now all totally affected by the fire of 2015. Loss of tree top canopy, shrubs, grasses etc. prevent a slow melt of snow, which now turn creeks into runways of rampant water. On most years in the past this creek would go underground on its flow downward.
3- Togo Creek: also burned off, this creek was never an issue. It now contributes a large amount of water and runs across Fairview Golf Course, where it enters Reed Creek.
4- Tin Horn Creek: also burned off, this creek had a major flood on June 2, 1983 due to a build up of logs and debris over many years which also filled up the irrigation channel. It did this again this spring 2017, up until now this creek has not been a problem. The end result for us is a creek now going down road 9 and pouring into Reed creek.
With the fire all of this could be a yearly event, with horrible results of flooding and a raised water table. It must be noted that all 3 creeks try to find their way to the river meanwhile flooding and creating a large lake in the road 6,9 &10 area, all of which are productive farm lands as well as home sites. These creeks tried to flow to the river which was already swollen. There are two ways this happened.
1- Flow north along a creek and run into Kirby drain ( a major creek down road 6).
2 – The other route is same creek, only it flows south and through culverts that run under private driveways to 3 properties/houses Kirby, Quaedvlieg, Enixon and through an ill conceived culvert of over 100 feet that was implanted in the creek to enable the previous owner of the lot to build a house – it is totally plugged, water runs over it to the river. On June 9, 2017 RDOS showed up at this driveway with 2 pumps (650 gal minute each) pumping for hours each day until June 15th, moving a lot of water to below Road 9 bridge, by the last day pumping our water table had dropped at least 12 inches at the house and continued to drop on all affected properties as well!
Hopefully we get answers to this flooding situation before next year. Such as:
1- starting pumping much sooner.
2- rerouting this creek to below road 9 bridge as suggested in the past, thus preventing any back up and the free flow of water into river.
3- Possible diverting of Reed Creek down road 6 to Sawmill Road Junction to flow into Kirby Drain, thus in turn reducing the flow considerably in the creek at road 9.
In summary, clearly this will not be a 100 year event – not any more folks, Fire has changed everything!
Anna Warwick Sears – Executive Director – Okanagan Basin Water Board – Kelowna
Mark Woods – Community Services Manager – RDOS – Penticton
Shaun Reimer – Section Head – FLNRO (Forest, Land, Natural Resource Operations) – Public Safety and Protection – Penticton
About 70 residents of the South Okanagan gathered Wednesday at Oliver’s Community Hall to talk about fire, floods and water problems affecting them in 2017. The “Town Hall” meeting organized by RDOS Area C Director Terry Schafer and staff at the Regional District office.
Basically the discussion centered on two themes:
Too much water off the Okanagan watershed mountains this spring, a rising Okanagan Lake, and the resulting flooding of much land south of Penticton
The aftermath of the Oliver (Kobau) fire of 2015 and creeks swelling presenting problems for land owners in the Road Six to Rd 11 area.
Both of the above coupled with complaints about a lack of communication and long range planning.
Bill Koenig – lives and works at the bottom of the Rd 6 area and talked to the issue of Reed Creek (heavy flow) filling the basin with water and the ineffective drainage system. Koenig says the area needs a Drainage Management System.
These thoughts echoed by Gordon Kirby of the Rd 9 area who wrote to the RDOS and the government without much communication thereafter. Kirby suggested that outflows from Reed Creek and Tinhorn Creeks need to be channeled and exit on the south side of the Road Nine Bridge.
Upstream – Winery Owner Bill Eggert stated that the communication about a rising creek was absent this spring. “When there is a problem that might affect me – I expect someone to phone me or knock on my door”.
To the west and north of Eggert, homeowner Bruce Hamilton said there was a lot of water coming off the hills that threatened his property. “More must be done to clean out the creeks of debris and sediment”.
Gary Cook told the meeting it has never been as bad (high water) in the Park Rill area on Island Way – north of Oliver. Cook suggested the river channel needs to be dredged to remove sediment and allow a freer flow of water. He asked if the ORRI river salmon enhancement project was part of the high water problem.
Owners of Vaseux Lake properties were concerned about the high levels of the lake for the last few years and the erosion of the land in front of their homes.
One resident of Osoyoos talked to the issue of how high the water was in the lake and another resident of Rd 22 expressed concerns that the height of that lake has on his low lying grazing land.
Anna Warwick Sears talked to the fact that a Osoyoos Lake water control meeting will be held shortly and invited all those concerned to attend. The height of the lake is largely controlled by the Zosel Dam in Oroville and depends on the flow of the Similkameen River which is not controlled by dams.
Shaun Reimer made a lengthy presentation on water flow models that led to a problem with draining Okanagan Lake. Reimer said that 2017 was an unusual year not following any models in a 100 year period. ” I have been in the area since 1995 and never have I seen this level of outflow.” “More water in one week than some years in the 20’s.
Reimer says events like this because of climate change are ” Not if BUT when” and modelling helps those that have their hands on the dam gates.
Sears backed that up with predictions of more dry drought year, more wet years, and less regular (normative) years – extremes becoming the norm so that all efforts now going into preparation for both of these situations. The valley governments involved in Flood Mapping and looking for grant opportunities to fund more studies.
Reimer told the meeting that FLNRO does not have the funds for a lot of drainage studies and urged the Regional District to look into the problems in the Testalinda, Hester, Tinhorn, Reed Creek area.
Friends and family gathered under the trees at the home of Ernie and Cheryl Dumais to celebrate the life of Susan McCullough on August 13, 2017. The beauty of the valley spread out before us as memories were shared of early days together living in Oliver.
Susan was born May 31, 1946 in Calgary, grew up in Victoria and died September 14, 2016. She moved to Oliver in 1968 as part of a group of young couples drawn to the area because the local School Board offered increments on the pay scale for well qualified new teachers. Most planned to stay a year. Many stayed a lifetime, remaining friends and raising their children here.
Some of those children, now grown, came to support Susan’s son, Jarod (Sean) McCullough and to recall the escapades and freedom of kids growing up part of a community where parents were friends, kids ran free from house to house, and adventures in Tuc-el-nuit Lake and on Mt. Baldy created a strong sense of belonging. Peter Busink and Sebastian Nicholas both spoke about the warmth of small town life where everyone knew everyone. Teachers, doctors, orchardists, dentists were also family friends and shared in everyday life.
The Celebration of Susan’s life was spearheaded by her stalwart friend, Judy Nicholas who passed away very recently but knew her friends, Cheryl Dumais and Larraine McCarthy were carrying out her plan to honour Susan.
Susan was known for her kindness, her poise, her abiding interest and involvement in medical and social justice advocacy and her love of animals. She was a woman of many talents. Initially a dental assistant she later trained as a Health Records Administrator. She taught figure skating, took part in equestrian events, became certified as a Mental Health Worker, worked tirelessly for Victim’s Assistance and Brain Injury support groups. She played piano and was a past President of the South Okanagan Concert Society.
Life dealt Susan some very hard blows but her resilience was remarkable and her efforts on behalf of others never ceased. It was fitting that her old friends could gather, G&T in hand, to share intergenerational stories triggered by the many pictures from Susan’s life set up on tables and hung on lines between the trees in a part of the world where her spirit is not forgotten.
Break/Enter and Theft – AG Foods
On the morning of August 21, 2017 Osoyoos RCMP responded to a break enter and theft at AG Foods. Sometime over the night, suspects forced their way in and targeted the cigarettes and lottery tickets. Lottery tickets are traceable and anyone found to be trying to cash them can expect to be charged with possession of stolen property. The Osoyoos RCMP are interested in hearing from anyone who has been or is approached for the sale of cigarettes or lottery tickets that are clearly not being sold by a business. If you have information related to this crime you are asked to call the Osoyoos RCMP at 250-495-7236 and quote File 2017-4675 or call Crime Stoppers if you wish to remain anonymous.
On Thursday August 10, 2017, Mr. Donald Charles Osborne of Oliver passed away suddenly but peacefully at his home at the age of 84 years.
He was predeceased by his parents John & Irene Osborne; brothers Bob, Jerry and Fred and son Rick Osborne.
Don will be fondly remembered by his daughter Cindy (Kim Myers); two grandsons and two great-granddaughters.
Over the years Don worked as a salesman, realtor, disc jockey and limo operator for wine tours.
He volunteered his time as a DJ for an indoor walking program, was a member of the Royal Canadian Legion and with the Oliver Seniors Association and with kids Bocce Ball. Don and a couple of friends started up the “505 Singles Dinner Club”. They would meet every Thursday at 5:05 pm at various Oliver restaurants.
Don was also an active member of the Oliver Seventh-day Adventist Church and with the Mason’s.
He enjoyed playing cribbage, lawn bowling and was a pool shark.
Donations are gratefully accepted for the Oliver Seventh-day Adventist Church.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday August 26th at the Oliver Seventh-day Adventist.
Condolences may be directed to the family by visiting www.nunes-pottinger.com
Arrangements entrusted to Nunes-Pottinger Funeral Service & Crematorium, Oliver & Osoyoos.
The Bats of Skunk Hollow
Our house was next to the mountain in an area nicknamed Skunk Hollow. In all the years we lived there we never saw one skunk! There were bears, cougars; bobcats; snakes, spiders, scorpions, ants, black widow spiders, puff spiders; Daddy long legs and a host of other critters but never a skunk. I always wondered who named it Skunk Hollow!!
We learned to live alongside these critters but the one that I could not tolerate was the bat. I was terrified of them. In the summer we often sat on the front porch to catch a cool breeze and watch the sun slide behind the mountain. Within minutes of dusk settling in we would hear the flap, flap, flap of those dreaded little creatures from another world.
We could see them against the fading light as they came from the mountain. Hordes of them all circling and swooping. They were one creature that struck terror in my heart and made me weak with fear.
I remember one night just at dusk when we were sitting on the porch waiting for out of town company. Before long a car pulled up behind Dad’s and a big guy got out of the car. Wow..we were excited! It was the Armeneau’s from Vancouver.
No sooner had they all got out of the car when they were attacked by the bats. They swooped down and scared the ***** out of everyone but Silver. They seemed to be attracted to Jane’s red hair and Wayne’s blond hair and Lorna’s auburn hair as they kept swooping and grabbing. Silver had no hair so he was immune from these little attacks.
There was a lot of screaming from Jane and Lorna. Wayne, being a big strong boy, grabbed some rocks and threw them up in the air without thinking that they were gonna land somewhere…yup…bump, bump, bump…right on top of their car. Now it had three lovely little dents in the roof!
Dad calmly walked around the side of the house and turned on the tap and told Silver to grab the hose and aim for the little bats. As soon as they felt the spray from the water they left us alone.
Well that was such a nice welcome for our company! Every night that they were there we would sit on the step with Wayne in charge of the hose and as soon as we saw them coming, he went into action and hosed them down!!!
It was always at dusk that we were bothered by them all through the years. I have not seen a bat anywhere else and that suits me just fine!!!
Burrowing Owl’s charitable contributions soar past $1 million – helping endangered owls.
The Okanagan’s Burrowing Owl Estate Winery is proud to announce a milestone in its support of charitable organizations including the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society of BC. As of August 1st the winery had raised $1.02 million, which has benefited not only the Society, but also other worthy organizations such as the South Okanagan Raptor Rehabilitation Centre, The Nature Trust of British Columbia, and Nature Conservancy Canada.
Since 2004, Burrowing Owl Estate Winery has been raising funds for conservation by charging a $3 tasting fee to patrons who sample its wines at its on-site wine shop. Proceeds have been donated on an annual basis, with the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society receiving the largest portion of the funds.
The conservation work of the winery has helped the burrowing owl make a comeback in British Columbia.
While some regions around us have been moved to Drought Level 3, the Okanagan, as of August 22, remains at Level 2. That said, we haven’t had any significant rainfall for many weeks, and the forecast is calling for more hot and dry weather.
According to provincial staff, at least two Okanagan streams are experiencing low flows: Vaseux Creek and Inkaneep Creek. Streams backed by storage are doing okay. After historic highs this spring, Kalamalka, Okanagan, and Osoyoos lakes are nearing average levels. Aquifers throughout the Okanagan are at, or above, historical averages. Real-time aquifer conditions are available on the BC Groundwater Observation Well Net-work.
Information on drought levels and average streamflows is available on the BC Drought Information Portal.
Drought Level 2 calls for a voluntary 10% reduction in water use, but the province acknowledges that most water users on municipal systems have water conservation bylaws that differ from provincial targets due to local water supply and demand, and the availability of storage. Okanagan water purveyors are generally reporting normal supply conditions. We know of only two purveyors who have moved to higher restrictions. Kelowna has moved to Stage 1, not because their supply is insufficient (Okanagan Lake), but because their water system is running close to capacity due to high demand. Greater Vernon Water has moved to Stage 1 because their Duteau Creek reservoir is below average.
The province is asking licensees with upstream storage to follow the release schedule requirements in their licences to avoid potential instream flow issues.
A motion on ‘gaining intervener status’ has been approved at the RDOS
Both the Rural Director Area C – Terry Schafer and his alternate Rick Knodel were hoping for passage of a motion to gain access to the BC Utilities Commission on the two tier rate system review.
We asked Manager of Legislative Services Christy Malden of the Regional District exactly what happened.
“THAT the Board of Directors seek to obtain Intervener Status with BC Utilities Commission on the FortisBC General Rate Application and that administration apply for any funding assistance available to assist with obtaining Intervener status. – Carried
Opposed: Directors Sentes, McKortoff, Bush, Martin”
Administration will now look into the process to become an Intervener.
The City of Penticton and District of Summerland are already registered interveners so we will likely consult with them on what that process may look like said Malden.
Schafer told ODN that the four directors who did not vote in support had thoughts on a more direct approach to the provincial government.
From Wayne Danbrook
What happened to the democracy in Oliver?
We as taxpayers deserve better attention and a referendum regarding the choice of building on green space.
One Man should not have his dream come true until the people of Oliver have their choice by referendum and not wishy-washy council meetings where as the Hotel choice had been made several years ago.
Remember in 2008 when the people of Oliver signed a petition of approximately 800 people to save
Centennial Park from the Wine Village Dream.
Again in 2017 another petition was collected with approximately 600 Oliverites who do not want to see
The RV Park dug up. Yes most of us want a Hotel but not in Park Land as there are other locations to be considered. This decision will not vitalize the town alone.
This park is not only heritage but brings many families and seniors together every year for many special occasions such as sports and other gatherings. Not to mention the money spent daily at our local stores, wineries & fruit stands. These are called Tourist dollars from all over and the Chamber is trying to promote this. One less business will affect the down town core.
I regret your decision.
Sincerely a concerned citizen.
Transit System: South Okanagan-Similkameen
Starting September 5, transit users in Osoyoos, Oliver and Kaleden will be able to take the bus to Penticton five days of the week, thanks to the addition of a new day of service to route 40 Osoyoos/Penticton.
This service expansion amounts to a total of 350 new hours added to the Okanagan-Similkameen Transit System, allowing route 40 Osoyoos/Penticton to offer service on Fridays, as well as keeping its existing Tuesday through Thursday runs. The new Friday schedule will mirror the Tuesday through Thursday service, with the first bus leaving Osoyoos at 7:30 a.m. The Monday Health Connections service will continue to take passengers to medical appointments as far away as Kelowna.
This service expansion is possible thanks to funding from the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen and the Province of B.C. It comes in response to public feedback and consultations, and is part of the South Okanagan-Similkameen Transit Future Plan.
For more information, routes and service alerts in the South Okanagan Similkameen Transit System, please visit https://bctransit.com/south-okanagan-similkameen.