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Federal $$ at work

Federal Government to improve public access to Vaseux-Bighorn National Wildlife Area.

Ottawa will be investing a total of $8 million over five years and $725,000 on an ongoing basis in 10 National Wildlife Areas across Canada that have been selected as suitable for increased public access.

Funding will focus on connecting Canadians to nature by: improving basic infrastructure to make sites more accessible; creating new or expanded trails and viewing platforms; providing on-site programs delivered through collaborative partnerships; and supporting a variety of low-impact public uses, such as hiking, canoeing, kayaking, skiing, snowshoeing, or wildlife observation and photography.

Vaseux-Bighorn National Wildlife Area is located  between Oliver and Okanagan Falls. Old ponderosa pine and Douglas-firs located throughout the 812 hectares of land create habitat for threatened birds such as the Lewis’s and White‑headed Woodpeckers. The area also includes unique grasslands and a variety of rare plants such as Bluebunch Wheatgrass, Antelope Brush and Red Osier Dogwood.

Quick Facts

  • A key pillar of Canada’s new National Conservation Plan is to connect Canadians with nature.
  • Since 2006, we have added an area nearly twice the size of Vancouver Island to the network of federal protected areas. This includes establishing three National Wildlife Areas, bringing the total to 54 across Canada.
  • National Wildlife Areas are owned by the federal government and are an effective tool for promoting biodiversity and protecting habitat for species at risk.
  • More than half of the National Wildlife Areas provide a home for species at risk.
  • Vaseux-Bighorn in particular takes its name from the Vaseux Lake reservoir and the California Bighorn Sheep, a key species in the area.
  • Public access is currently limited to a few designated trails, a wildlife viewing tower and boardwalk.


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Guys – how is Movember coming along


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Theatre Manager required – full time position

Revised theatre

This is a paid ad. Any questions should be addressed to the Theatre Society.

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Christmas open house – November 30th


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Drivers making left turns more likely to hit pedestrians

 71 year-old Almay Cumberland was killed while crossing Highway 97 in Okanagan Falls in September of 2011.

okanagan falls news pedestrian crosswalk

A new review from the BC Coroners Service shows risks to pedestrians and other vulnerable road users remain high on B.C.’s roads even as risks to occupants of motor vehicles continue to decline.

The BC Coroners’ data shows that between 2008 and 2012, the number of vehicle drivers and passengers who died in motor vehicle incidents dropped by more than one third – but the number of pedestrians killed remained constant over that five-year period at about 55 each year.

The BC Coroners Service released the new figures to mark the National Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims.

“Every road crash death is a tragedy,” said Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe, “Especially as so many of these incidents are preventable. This year we want to focus on pedestrians because our research shows this is an area in which a great deal of prevention work still needs to be done.”

The BC Coroners Service undertook a detailed analysis of 142 pedestrian deaths that occurred in B.C. from 2010 through 2012.

The analysis found that almost half the fatal incidents took place at intersections, and in more than half of those cases the pedestrian either had the right of way or was waiting on a sidewalk or median. In about 70% of those cases where the pedestrian had the right of way in crossing the road, the vehicle driver was making a left turn, which research shows is one of the most complex manoeuvres for a driver to tackle, increasing their chances of not seeing a pedestrian until it is too late to avoid them.

BC Coroners’ investigations showed contributing factors in these cases involved behaviours of both the pedestrians and the drivers, and also problems with the environment, particularly areas of poor visibility. The three most common factors cited by coroners were: pedestrians wearing dark clothing which made them difficult to see; the driver was distracted or otherwise failed to see the pedestrian in time; or light conditions were poor.

And though few older pedestrians were impaired at the time of the incident, more than half of those under the age of 60 were found to have been using alcohol or drugs.

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Flames shoot through roof – one resident to hospital

kirklandpen fire22Sherri Adams writes

All is good most of us have been let back in just in the last 1/2 hour. Only 4 units are not allowed back in because of water damage

Penticton firemen put out a fire in one 4th floor apartment suite at a complex at 803 Fairview.

Across street from the Library/Museum.

Kirkland Apartments.

Ambulance crews took one person to hospital for treatment. Extent of injuries not known. Damage extensive on that floor.


Thanks to Castanet

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An evening with Oliver Fire Rescue

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Press images for larger

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Packed house for OTA video and annual review

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Oliver Tourism Association (OTA) invited the community, its members and many volunteers to join them in a Brag and Beef session at the Visitors Centre.

The meet reviewed work on a new strategic plan, a new mission statement and the premiere of a new 2 minutes video to promote the area prepared by Lionel Trudel.

Revised vision – The Oliver Tourism Association is a respected and valued community based organization that proves all encompassing tourism services and regional destination marketing for our stakeholders.

Looking for a signature annual event to help with permanent sustainable funding – independent of government subsidies. Oliver Jam Fest – one concept being looked at during the summer/fall period. Another idea to capitalize on the annual salmon run on the Okanagan River and the hike and bike experience. The OTA is looking to market Youth engagement and Sports Adventure tourism.

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down the aisle nov 20

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Thank you Ross Jewel

ddale22Long time volunteer with the Special Olympics Curling Team, Ross Jewel, gives the victory salute at his final coaching day on Wednesday.

Ross is in the centre of the back row, with the black hat. He is surrounded by other coaches and the Olympians themselves, who are all giving a cheer because it also happened to be Ross’s birthday.

Ross stated that the best present of all was ‘watching these people learn to curl over the past 5 years.’

Eastlink Curling Centre Oliver

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Winter canal tour – in and out of the ground

tour one22tour two22Oliver agricultural water system starts as a diversion from a river at McIntrye Bluff and goes above ground in a ditch for many miles – with frequent dips to large underground pipes. Most of those dips constructed in recent memory for a system that was first totally designed for gravity to push the water through.

You could write a book on this 22 km water system. It requires a lot of maintenance.

tour three22

tour four22

All pictures from the south side of main Town crossing pipeline.

Road Two – looking north
Road Three – looking south and going underground
Road Seven – two types of concrete – reguluar slanted sides and rectangular box
Road Eleven – canal ends and goes underground to Road 18 Pump House.

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Oliver tops the polls when it comes to scout popcorn

Scout Popcorn is being picked up from Kelowna today (November 20th).  It will be transported to Oliver and then sorted overnight.  Kids/Parents will be able to pick up their orders starting tomorrow.  And, individual deliveries will start to take place from that point onwards depending on ability to contact clients.  If any one has not yet received their popcorn by Sunday, November 30th, they should contact myself at (250)408-4179.

Initial delivery was expected yesterday, however, the delivery truck was delayed a day due to inclement weather on the Alberta side of the border…

Incidentally, we had the highest gross popcorn sales of any group in the region again this year.  With net funds of $4684 being raised to support our program.  Great work by the youth getting out there and making the pitches!  And, a GIGANTIC thank-you to the community of Oliver for their support!!

Regards, Mike

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Innovation – don’t you love it?

The Regional District has teamed up with the City of Penticton to promote water conservation in a sustainable and chemical free manner. The concept is not new but the South Okanagan program is the first of its kind in the Interior of BC. A total of 1,700 tonnes of compost has been given away to over 150 residents of Penticton and throughout the Regional District.

Residents registered for the program in October. Since the first week of November local trucking companies and residents have been busy picking up loads. Home owners then rake in compost in a thin layer across their lawns. Winter snow and rain then incorporate the material into the soil by spring.

Soil scientists advocate the application of a thin layer of compost as top-dressing to lawns and anywhere turf grass is planted. An application of compost late in the year helps to rejuvenate turf. It also eliminates thatch, dry dead grass, by dissolving it into the soil. Nutrients are then slowly released over the winter and early spring. The grass is healthier, water is held in the soils better and the grass stays greener longer in the hot weather. Homeowners use less water to stay green!

November is an ideal time to over-seed the lawn with grass seed.

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Big Bird lands – July 6, 2012 – flashback

de Havilland Canada DHC-5 Buffalo

Photographer Eileen Redding

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Wish your customers a happy holiday

christmas photos

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A week of preparations – left to go – light up in the dark


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Man who fled on foot to avoid arrest – back behind bars

massieWest Kelowna – Vincent MASSIE, who was wanted on outstanding warrants was taken into custody without incident last night at a residence in West Kelowna.

On November 12th members of the Kelowna RCMP Warrant Team were able to track Vincent Lorne MASSIE, wanted on outstanding warrants out of Kelowna, to a residence in Deep Creek near Salmon Arm.

Immediately upon seeing police, MASSIE fled the residence on foot, evading a coordinated police effort to bring him into custody. He remained at large for a week.

MASSIE is wanted on two Warrants for Resisting Arrest, Forcible Confinement, and Assault.

MASSIE is described as:
•Caucasian male
•44 years
•5 ft 5 in (165 cm)

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Nunset Boulevard22 final o 18


Live Link to SOAP website


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Locals involved

smallThe Small Business B.C. Awards is accepting nominations and already a few local businesses and entrepreneurs have been recognized for their contributions and achievements.

Nominations and votes will be accepted until Nov. 30, 2014 and is open to all new and existing businesses registered in B.C. with fewer than 50 employees. The Top 10 businesses with the most votes in each award category will move on to the next stage of the contest.

So far, So Country with Dennis Walker and White Kennedy LLP are the only Penticton businesses nominated in various categories. Also representing the South Okanagan is Jane Long, a chartered accountant from Osoyoos who is nominated for best concept, premier’s people’s choice and best emerging entrepreneur.

Winners will recieve the Premier’s Prize of $1,500 cash, a one-year-All-Access Pass to Small Business B.C. education and experts, business mentorship form the award sponsor and the honour of being named a top B.C. small business.

To nominate a business or find out more, visit

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Mary Fry – bringing the spirit of Christmas to your window

a xmas mary

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Keep Ken busy this winter

???????????????????????????????????????House check – 1 time per week – Only $75 a month

House check 3 times per week – Only $125 a month

Quail Security will water your plants

and pick up the mail – all included

Shorter time away?

1 week $25
2 weeks $45
3 weeks $60
1 month $75


Contact Quail Security – Ken Campbell

250.689.3499 or email

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Shake up at Castanet

trevorNews Editor Trevor Rockliffe has left the building.

When contacted tonight – his comment “tell the masses I’ve left to write a book – that part is true – it will be done by January”.

Rockliffe started his journalism career as program director of the school radio station and Editor of the school news paper at Centennial High in Coquitlam.

Graduated BCIT with a diploma in Broadcast Journalism and opened his own video production company for news and corporate videos.

He became the Program Director for Shaw Cable in Kelowna/Kamloops and completed his Bachelor Degree in Journalism at TRU in Kamloops.

Before coming to Castanet as the News Director Trevor worked as a video journalist for CTV for three years covering the interior of BC.

Rockliffe has been replaced by Wayne Moore.

Picture source: Castanet

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Chamber leaders elected to higher office

petra-and-jimNewly elected town councillors Petra Veintimilla (SOCC director) and Jim King (SOCC Treasurer) at  Wednesday’s  Network Night at Stoneboat Vineyards.

Thanks to

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Milfoil machine vandalized at Osoyoos

pix from castanet

pix from castanet


 With only weeks left to rototill milfoil in Osoyoos Lake before winter freeze-up, vandalism and theft from one of the Okanagan Basin Water Board’s (OBWB) machines has effectively stopped efforts to control the invasive weed in the South Okanagan Lake.

“It’s really unfortunate,” said OBWB Office and Projects Manager James Littley. “The Water Board is already limited by environmental work windows and has added extra operator hours, during the work time available, to try and remove as much milfoil as possible.  All of this is in an effort to ensure we have less of the troublesome weed in the lake for the upcoming summer and tourist season.”

Rototilling is the most effective method of controlling the weed since it deroots the plant, allows it to float to the surface, and die. However, rototilling is only an option in the winter, explained Littley.  It can’t be done in summer since the plant will re-root in warmer conditions.  Instead, in the summer, the Water Board harvests (mows) the weed and only to a depth of about 6 feet. This is really more an esthetic treatment, he added.

This incident will delay rototilling at least a few days to allow staff to repair the machine and replace specialized safety equipment.  It is unclear the cost of the damage and lost equipment at this time.  The incident has been reported to Osoyoos RCMP.

Anyone with information contact Osoyoos RCMP at (250) 495-7236.

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