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Microbrews for microphones

The local craft beer industry has stepped up to support the establishment of a community radio studio in Penticton.

In March, beer lovers who fill up their growlers at Bad Tattoo, Cannery Brewing, Tin Whistle Brewery and Kettle Valley Station Pub will be helping to raise funds for Peach City Radio.

"We've enjoyed getting to know our local microbreweries and are happy that they have joined up with us for this friendly competition and fundraiser," said community support chair Jackie Del Rizzo. "We're encouraging everyone to visit these local tasting rooms, fill up a growler with their favourite brew, and know that they are supporting both the local craft beer industry and Peach City Radio at the same time."

A growler is a re-fillable two litre glass jug that can be used to purchase local beers.

Between March 1 and 31, part proceeds from each growler filled at participating locations will be donated to Raise the Radio campaign. The campaign is an effort to help build a fully outfitted broadcast studio for the Peach City Community Radio Society.

The goal is  to raise $30,000 to purchase a transmitter, tower, antennae and all the required studio equipment for FM broadcast, including some quality microphones.

This future radio studio will be set up for the community in the Valley First Community Arts Centre, formerly the Penmar Theatre.

Points will be earned at each location based on the number of growler fills over the course of the month. The first ever Microbrews for Microphones trophy for Penticton's favourite beer will be presented at the 2015 Fest of Ale in April.

For more information, contact [email protected]



BC NDP looks forward

About 300 people attended a BC NDP conference focused on campaign tactics for 2017, held in Penticton this weekend.

Party faithful of all ages were treated to inspirational speakers and breakout sessions at the Forward conference at the trade and convention centre.

"We were doing sessions on data, fundraising, volunteer recruitment and social media," said Craig Keating, BC NDP president. "And I am pleased to say there were longtime party members and young people who represent the diverse make up of the province here."

The conference included presentations by Mitch Stewart and Lynda Tran, strategists for U.S. President Barack Obama.

"These are individuals who worked on the Obama campaign with deep ties to the U.S. Democratic party, who view us as their allies," said Keating.

Obama has won two elections, he added, and they came and spoke about the strategies they used in the States.

BC NDP Leader John Horgan was in attendance and gave an inspirational speech Saturday morning about why families need a break from the current government, said Keating.

He also took time to engage with participants during the conference.

Coree Tull, a 29-year-old attendee from Vancouver, said she was really excited about the opportunities that were presented, from the training to the keynote speakers.

"I knew it would be a great opportunity to connect with New Democrats from across the province and to start thinking about moving forward and what is needed to win the election in 2017," she said."I am walking away feeling energized and ready to work hard."

Keating said the aftermath of the conference will be that people go back to their communities and start working.

"We are not taking anything lying down," he said. "We are going to work harder and smarter than we ever have before to make sure John Horgan is the next premier of the province."

New home for med students

Visting medical students and locum physicians now have a home away from home at Penticton Regional Hospital.

A new factory-built modular student housing facility was placed on the site, Saturday, near the hospital's psychiatric unit.

The fully furnished, single-storey residence will be known as the Lloyd and Lota Jobling House in honour of the Penticton residents who donated more than $500,000 from their estate to the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation for the project.

Lloyd Jobling, predeceased by his wife Lota, died in July 2010.

Half the structure, manufactured by Chaparral Industries of Kelowna, was delivered Thursday and the other half on Saturday.

Janice Perrino, the foundation's executive director, said the Jobling House will replace an aging trailer near the PRH parking lot entrance of Government Street, which was previously used as a residence for medical students for almost 30 years. Prior to that, the portable building served as a daycare.

"There was a need for this facility because we wanted resident doctors, nurses or anyone who was coming here for a period of time, to have a proper place to stay," she said.

Students will be required to pay a nominal fee to cover the costs of cleaning and maintenance.

The residence will include six bedrooms, kitchen facilities and a lounge. A small shed for bicycles and other items will also be included.

The residence should be ready for occupancy in April.


Nude beach on agenda

Penticton council is expected to discuss solutions to public nudity at Three Mile Beach at Monday's meeting. 

Recommendations in a staff report on the matter include the possibility of levying fines for public nudity, using signs to control clothing optional behaviour in a public space, segregating the area and encouraging the clothing optional users to move to an alternative location where neighbourhood acceptance exists.

"We have been getting phone calls and emails from both sides, and each side is very polarized," said Mayor Andrew Jakubeit. "So in essence this has been thrown on council's lap to come up with some sort of solution."

Council also expects to hear from Kevin Proteau, speaking on behalf of the Three Mile Naturist Beach Committee at the meeting.

Frustrated neighbours told Penticton council in early February there will be no compromise when it comes to use of Three Mile Beach.

A delegation including Cary Pinkowski, owner of private property next to the beach, and neighbour Matt Fraser said in no uncertain terms they want their neighbourhood back.

The neighbours claim there have been ads of a sexual nature regarding the beach and evidence of sex acts found there.

Meanwhile, naturists who used a private portion of the beach for years, before moving to the public beach last summer when no trespassing signs went up, say they simply enjoy using the beach.

They say lewd acts do not take place there and that the beach itself attracts tourists.

Other council highlights are delegations from the BC SPCA South Okanagan /Similkameen Branch and Penticton RCMP.  Supt. Kevin Hewco will be discussing community policing recruitment.

A brewery lounge endorsement for the Cannery Brewing Company, 2015 special occasion license applications, expansion/re-location of the BMX track to 630 Munson Mountain Road, adoption of a fire and life safety amendment bylaw and zoning amendments fill out the rest of the agenda.

A public hearing regarding a zoning amendment bylaw for 115 Kinney Avenue will be held prior to the meeting.



Arctic Apple sold for $41M

Just two weeks after the Summerland Arctic Apple was approved for sale in the USA, the company has sold for $41 million. 

After a long battle, Summerland's own Okanagan Specialty Fruits (OSF), pioneer of the non-browning Arctic Golden and Arctic Granny apples, was over the moon its apples had been approved for sale across the border.

“The commercial approval of Arctic apples, our company’s flagship product, is the biggest milestone yet for us, and we can’t wait until they’re available for consumers,” said Neal Carter at that time, president and founder of OSF. “It is truly enormous, it allows us to come out of a holding pattern we have been in waiting for approval.”

Now, just two weeks later, the company has been taken over by Intrexon Corporation, that calls itself a leader in synthetic biology.

The company announced Friday that it had entered into an agreement to acquire OSF. Through acquisition it hopes to expand its food programs to include trees yielding fruit that is more ‘appetizing and convenient for consumers’.

“We are committed to bringing better versions of consumers’ favourite fruits to their grocery stores and kitchens, while addressing additional novel traits in tree fruits that reduce waste and address supply chain challenges,” said Carter on Friday.

“Joining forces with Intrexon and applying our combined technical know-how is an important step to introducing beneficial products for consumers and growers.”

Intrexon says that marrying the art of fruit breeding with cutting-edge science results in exciting new products that can benefit consumers and producers alike.

“Okanagan is a world leader in the development of fruit-bearing plants to express enhanced, advantageous traits with tremendous potential to revolutionize the tree fruit industry,” says Thomas R. Kasser, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Head of Intrexon’s Food Sector. 

“Through this acquisition, we can deliver more accessible and affordable choices of high-quality foods for an ever-growing population.  We are extremely pleased that Neal Carter will remain with the company providing both the creative spirit and deep understanding of the tree fruit business that will assure continued future success in this expanding business opportunity.”

For the deal, Okanagan Specialty Fruits stockholders will receive $31 million in Intrexon common stock and $10 million in upfront cash.  

As it currently stands, the Arctic Apple can not be sold in Canada. 

Teneycke pleads not guilty

An Okanagan Falls man accused of several charges including making or being in possession of explosives, pleaded not guilty in provincial court Friday morning. 

Ronald Arthur Teneycke, who has a long list of criminal offences and is a registered sex offender, appeared before Justice Gregory Koturbash by video conference from Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre.

Teneycke is charged with making or possessing firearms and being in possession of an explosive device, contrary to a prohibition from Dec. 27, 2013 to March 13, 2014.

The circumstances of those charges are under a publication ban at this time. 

Teneycke's breach of probation charges include not abiding by his curfew, not presenting himself at the door of his residence, nor answering his phone when the probation officer called. 

Teneycke disagreed with those claims. 

"The police were aware I was at home . . . I simply didn't come to the door," he said. "I never broke your order Judge Koturbash, and therefore I plead not guilty to all of those charges." 

On Tuesday of this week, Teneycke dismissed his lawyer, James Pennington. He now plans to represent himself against all charges. 

Health Fair brings in TV doc

A veteran medical personality will be speaking at the annual healthy living fair in Penticton March 14.

Dr. Art Hister will be at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre to talk about how to live a healthier and happier life.

This event is presented by the Okanagan Similkameen Healthy Living Fair Society, which aims to support and profile Healthy Living initiatives in our community.

Dr. Hister will speak about the “Simple Steps for a Longer, Healthier, Happier Life”, at 9:15 a.m. on the main stage in the PTCC, just after the opening ceremonies.

"In his humorous, common sense style, Dr. Hister will tantalize our audience with many simple steps just about anyone – no matter how young or old, no matter their previous medical history - can take," said Barb Sheppard, Healthy Living fair coordinator in a release.

Hister will talk about how to:

  1. Increase your chances of living longer
  2. Greatly lower your risk of developing those debilitating, chronic illnesses that most of us think are inevitable consequences of aging but most definitely are not
  3. Live with more energy and way more happiness, and most important in this day and age,
  4. Cope better with life’s inevitable stresses.

During the 2015 Healthy Living Fair, organizations will profile resources, products and services that support and encourage a healthy lifestyle.

After Hister speaks at 9:15 am, there will be free activity demonstrations, healthy eating sessions, Healthy Living Assessment stations and over 80 different information booths.

Hister has been a full time “media doctor” since 1991 and in that span has worked for several media outlets including BBC Radio in the UK, CBC Newsworld, CBC Radio, and the Corus Radio network. 

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