Festivals and fireworks to get RMI funding
Two prominent community groups got substantial grant approvals today under the resort municipalities initiative (RMI), although one of them received substantially less than it was seeking.
The Festivals Society and the Canada Day Fireworks Committee each were approved for $7,000 for this year at this afternoon’s council meeting. The fireworks group had asked for $10,000, but staff recommended the $7,000 figure.
Mayor Sue McKortoff and Councillor CJ Rhodes were in favour of granting the requested amount to the fireworks committee, but were out-voted by Councillors Brian Harvey, Jim King and Myers Bennett.
The mayor pointed out that this will be the twenty-fifth anniversary for pyrotechnics specialist Frank Zandvliet and that the extra money might help him do something extra special.
The committee does substantial other fund raising through the year for the Canada Day show.
This year the Festivals Society will host he 26th Easter Eggstravaganza, the 72nd Cherry Festival and the 32nd Christmas light-up.
The RMI is a provincial program that provides funding to 14 municipalities whose economies depend largely on tourism. The two organizations “can be classified as visitor enhancement activities,” according to a report from community services director Gerald Davis.
Community garden approved for Sonora Centre
Council authorized going forward with a proposal from Desert Sun Counselling for a community garden adjacent to the Sonora Centre.
The garden will allow people to learn about gardening by growing their own produce.
According to a report from community services director Gerald Davis, Desert Sun will operate the garden with a smaller role played by the town. The town will also provide the land – a 180-square-metre plot just east of the rear parking lot at the Sonora Centre.
Desert Sun will provide the garden’s wooden boxes, which will be made through the men’s shed program.
Dragsters and model airplanes at the airstrip
A model airplane club and a drag racing group were each approved to use the Osoyoos air strip for their activities this year.
The Wine Country Racing Association (WCRA) got the nod for five weekend dates of drag racing on the runway starting in April and ending in September, plus a weekend in October for possible rain-outs.
The agreement is for this year only.
In December, the WCRA asked council to consider making a 10-year commitment to the organization to provide stability for planning and infrastructure improvements.
Mayor Sue McKortoff told the group then that town staff would look at its proposal and report back some time in the new year. No mention of such a report was made today.
The Penticton Model Aviation Club has received permission to use the airstrip to fly model airplanes every year since 2013. This afternoon council approved their request for another year.
New museum on Main will open June 13
The Osoyoos Museum Society’s development permit for its new home in the former Home Building Centre was approved this afternoon, even as work continued in preparing the building to be a museum.
Society president Mat Hassen told ODN that interior work is proceeding in anticipation of the new museum’s opening on June 13, “come hell or high water.”
The process of relocating the museum from its Gyro Park Quonset hut began nearly a decade ago when the regional district purchased the Main Street site as the museum’s new home.
Hassen said opening hours at the old building have been reduced to one day a week between now and the move.