Sunday, April 26th16.9°C
Whats On

Parades, Parties and Poetry


Wishing you and your family a fun filled Vaisakhi. Happy Vaisakhi! #kelownavaisakhi

Posted by Kelowna Sikh Temple on Tuesday, April 14, 2015
An Evening of Appreciation for Walter Gray, Andre Blanleil, Robert Hobson
I had a chance to attend the launch of "Dig your Neighbourhood Mission" hosted by UBCO professor Nancy Holmes. Students have created posters, books, poetry, and more all focused on various neighbourhoods in our community. This year was the last year of the program and they focused on Mission. 
Find out more about this project on their website (  but here is their description of the event. 
For the past three years, UBC Creative Writing and Visual Arts students have created a series of projects that provide a locally generated, unique vision of specific neighbourhoods in Kelowna, British Columbia. These students research the neighbourhood, engage in community consultation, and then create at least one dozen items which are published and produced by a local non-profit, Lake Publishing, and then packaged and delivered to newcomers by our business partner, the Welcome Wagon. The packages have included calendars, blank cards, meditation cards, maps, board games, books of poetry, graphic novels, CDs and all kinds of fiction and one-of-a-kind guidebooks that are completely neighbourhood-specific. In 2013 as a pilot project, we launched the North End package for a compact inner city area of town; in 2014 we launched a package for Rutland, a huge suburban neighbourhood, and this year for 2015 we are taking up the challenge of the lower Mission, a sprawling urban/ rural mix. Ultimately, the goal of DYN is to reconnect people to their place of residence, and to generate discussion around cultural, historical, and ecological issues. Personal knowledge and awareness of one’s place can lead to greater feelings of belonging, ownership, and stewardship. DYN engages emerging artists in a real-world endeavour and provides excellent experience in community-based art.
This Saturday Lake Country votes on their referendum. There is stories featuring the details about the voting info here:
If you were buying a home you would take a tour so I shot a video last weekend featuring snippets of the Okanagan Rail Corridor which proved quite popular on Facebook. For those interested I shot it with the Instgram app #hyperlapse

Okanagan Rail Corridor


Posted by Ryan Donn on Sunday, April 19, 2015


New Petting Zoo for Kids

This past weekend my family had a chance to catch the opening of a new petting zoo in Kelowna.
The Hoof Prints Barnyard is located behind the Kelowna International Airport in the Ellison area. 
Hoof Prints is a partnership between Kristen and Kyra who have spent countless hours going over every detail and have came up with a petting zoo that has no less than 10 different zones for the kids to find something to do. The easiest way for me to share just how well thought out the petting zoo is by sharing the video I shot this weekend.

We checked out Kelowna's newest petting zoo, Hoof Prints Barnyard Parties, on the weekend. They are open to the public every Sunday 10am-4pm. $5 admission ($10 with Pony Ride).

Posted by Ryan Donn on Tuesday, April 14, 2015
They are currently open once a week on Sundays from 10-4pm with admission set at $5 each person or $10 if you also want to add in a pony ride. 
For those who talk about the various kids activities we have lost over the years  (West Kelowna waterslides, Flintstones, etc) sometimes it's forgotten the new options that have also arrived in town (H20, Energyplex, etc).  I think the best way to get more family focused activities back in the community is by supporting those small businesses that step out onto the ledge and offer to fill the desire for more family activities in Kelowna. There is a large appetite out there for family activities, which I think is why my quick video has already been viewed 2500 times in the 24hrs since it was put on Facebook. 

Introducing our new snuggle bunnies!! They can't wait to cuddle with you!!

Posted by Hoof Prints Barnyard Parties on Wednesday, April 8, 2015

What's On KelownaLike What's On Kelowna - Live Music Apr. 19th and 20th on Facebook

Friday, Apr.17th, 2015 venue
38th BC Interior Jazz Festival Kelowna Community Theatre
Ben Klick Fleetwood Public House
Jimmy LeGuilloux Band Whiski-Jacks
John Paul Byrne The Yellow House
The Steadies Doc Willoughby’s Pub
Tribute to Leonard Cohen Creekside Theatre, Winfield
Windmills & Mark Mills Streaming Café
Young Uns O’Flannigans Pub
Zamboni Brothers The Blue Gator
Saturday, Apr. 18th, 2015 venue
38th BC Interior Jazz Festival Kelowna Community Theatre
Easy Fix Fleetwood Public House
Jimmy LeGuilloux Band Whiski-Jacks
Laila Biali & the Radiance Project Minstrel Cafe
Sam Weber Streaming Café
Young Uns O’Flannigans Pub
Zamboni Brothers The Blue Gator
Ben Beveridge Artisan house

Leadercast: The Brave Ones

Leadercast once again returns to Kelowna on May 8th, hosted by the Kelowna Jaycees. 
This year their theme is “The Brave Ones” and as they say “bravery is not attributed to everyone, but is reserved for those whose innovation in their industry cause them to stand out from the crowd, whose unyielding effort and error push their organizations into new territories, and whose boldness compels them to stand up for those less fortunate.”
Purchase tickets here:
The speaker that I’m most looking forward to hearing from is Nobel Laureate, Malala Yousafzai, who after advocating for the rights of girls to receive an education was attacked by the Taliban in 2012. Her quote below summarizes perhaps why this year they chose the theme #thebraveones 

"I had two options: one was to remain silent and wait to be killed and the second was to speak up and then be killed. I...

Posted by Leadercast on Thursday, January 8, 2015
For an idea of the calibre of speakers they invite take a moment to watch their Leadercast 2014 recap video:

Leadercast 2014 Event Recap (Short) from Leadercast on Vimeo.

Another speaker I’m looking forward to hearing is Seth Godin. Here he is featured in one of my favourite TED talks:
Bye Bye Birdie at OKM
I also got a note from Ryan Grenier, Theatre teacher, at OKM. His students have been hard at work getting ready to launch Bye Bye Birdie at their beautiful new music/theatre room. It's probably our top new music/theatre venue in Kelowna. 

Check out Bye Bye Birdie! at OKM April 8, 9 & 10 and April 16, 17 & 18 Before Elvis Presley went off to war and...

Posted by What's on? on Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Robert Hobson Interview

Walter Gray, Andre Blanleil, and Robert Hobson each spent more than 20 years making Kelowna a better place for citizens and visitors. To celebrate that achievement and to show appreciation for these three men, a committee of appreciative citizens has come together to coordinate a celebration dinner event. 
The event will be held on Saturday, April 25th at the Delta Grant Okanagan Resort. Tickets are $100 (with a portion of proceeds going to the United Way) and can be purchased online: I understand there are about 50 tickets left at this time so move quickly if you want to be a part of this historic event. 
Joining MC, Robert Fine, guest speakers and story-tellers at this event will include Gerry Zimmerman, Ron Mattiussi, and Herb Dixon.  Committee Chair, David Rush:  “Serving Kelowna through work on council is a huge commitment and contribution.  Walter, Andre and Robert have given so greatly to our community, and we hope that this Celebration Evening will help to show them how much their many years of work have been appreciated.”  
I caught up with Robert Hobson last week to talk about his time on council, what he's been up to since stepping down, and some of his favourite past projects. We shot the interview at Munson Pond Park which he informed us in the interview has been on his radar for over 25 years (check out this page for more information on it:

Read more What's On articles


About the Author


Ryan Donn
(singer/songwriter, event producer, digital creative, Councillor at the City of Kelowna). 

I love creating and connecting. For years I spent most of my time in Kelowna creating songs. Those songs have been used by the Terry Fox Run, Kelowna’s Centennial Celebration, or heard on various local radio stations. 

In the past few years I've focused on creating community events including Music in the Park, New York New Years, Castanet’s Free Family Skate, Talented Kids, Talented Kelowna, etc. 

I use this column to connect some of our local creatives, events, unique local projects/non-profits, or perhaps the random column about our city. 

Originally from Scotland I’ve lived in Kelowna for over 20 years.  My wife, Kimberly, and our two daughters, Lyla and Bella, share our home with Tom (adult with diverse abilities). In 2014 I was elected to Kelowna City Council. 

Opinions are my own and don't represent the City of Kelowna, Festivals Kelowna or Creative Okanagan. 

Connect with Ryan:

email: [email protected]
google +



The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.

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