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John Thomson

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Sep 13, 2012 / 5:00 am

If you have driven out to the airport recently you have noticed the construction of the new hotel on the land across from the airport entrance. This will be the new Sheraton Four Points. There is a history of hotels for this site that never came to fruition. Different parties each time. First...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Sep 6, 2012 / 5:00 am

There has been a change in retail sales in Kelowna as the Robertson brothers Ron & Grant have sold their business on Pandosy St., Robertson’s Clothing & Shoes. Todd and Brenda Booker have taken over ownership this week. I have known so many people that shopped at...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Aug 30, 2012 / 5:00 am

I don’t know what you do to remind yourself of things that need to be looked into, but I write myself notes. I have pads in the car, my bedroom and the TV room. All these yellow pages with things scribbled on them. Some, especially the nighttime ones, are sometimes hard to decipher. So, I...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Aug 23, 2012 / 8:00 am

We have a new question on the roster this week: “Will Target sell merchandise at the same price as they do across the border?” Of course they won’t, but that doesn’t mean their prices in the Canadian market won’t be competitive. Certainly Target will set a new...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Aug 16, 2012 / 8:00 am

I read a story on the weekend about the success of Viking Air in Victoria, with a sale of $30 million to China for Twin Otter Floatplanes they build. They are built at the manufacturing plants in Victoria and Calgary. It could have been Kelowna. Well let me tell you a story… It all...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Aug 9, 2012 / 8:00 am

I wanted to talk about gasoline prices at the pump because they jumped a little just before the big long busiest weekend of the summer. I called my friend Dave Skogland, who owns the Skogie’s chain of car washes called Skogie’s Auto Spa. Dave opened Orchard Park Car Wash in 1971,...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Aug 2, 2012 / 8:00 am

I have written about it, talked about it, enquired about it - and finally the P.F. Chang Chinese Bistro has come to Canada with their fabulous Chinese food. They just opened their first restaurant in Canada in Don Mills. The first time we went to one of these restaurants was after John...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jul 26, 2012 / 8:00 am

Increasing support among restaurant owners spurred the B.C. government to change its longtime policy and permit restaurateurs to let patrons bring their own wine to restaurants in exchange for a fee called corkage. Made me think of the old days in Winnipeg when we went out for a night of...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jul 19, 2012 / 8:00 am

Rumours and Things . . . I am sitting here at the computer trying to make a decision on how I handle this particular story. It was last Wednesday and I received some information from a close contact of mine regarding a new major retailer for Kelowna. I wrote down the information and then...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jul 12, 2012 / 8:00 am

Rumours and Things . . . A well-known Kelowna developer/contractor is about to sign papers to take over the long planned Wharton Street project in Summerland. This is a downtown development and was for a time on the desk of a Kamloops developer who had some financial problems he couldn’t...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jul 5, 2012 / 8:00 am

Ranked by the total number of employees on the biggest insurance brokers in B.C. list, with 300 on staff Capri Insurance of Kelowna was rated sixth in the province. The company has ten offices in B.C. The ranking was done by Business in Vancouver. The very professional staff that Capri is...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jun 28, 2012 / 8:00 am

Barry Urness was my friend for many years. Now he is gone, and so quickly. What a great man who will be thoroughly missed from this community. He was everywhere doing everything to help make the project he was working on better. He never slowed down. What a man! We both belonged to a...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That

Jun 21, 2012 / 8:00 am

There have been questions, rumours and not a lot of answers to the proposed private health facility on native land in West Kelowna. The Westbank First Nations hasn’t said a lot about the development. Chief Robert Louis has been in touch for quite a long period of time, with Johns Hopkins...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jun 14, 2012 / 8:00 am

Whatever happened to supper? Didn’t we get called in for supper? Supper ain’t no more, now its called dinner. Dinner was at 12 noon. Now, its lunch. In those days we made a lunch to take where we going so we could eat it at dinner. Who changed all this? It has...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

Jun 7, 2012 / 8:00 am

Things are starting to happen in a very organized way as Zellers clean out their stores and get ready for the new tenant, Target Canada: Zellers Penticton closed this week: the liquidation sales saw everything go, and was a huge success. Final prices were 90% off. The store will now be...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

May 31, 2012 / 8:00 am

This is proving to be a big year on the drawing board for Walmart. The plans call for them to remodel 73 Canadian Stores this year, and that includes the 39 Zellers stores they bought from Target. They will have a chain of 375 stores and they will be ready for the Target onslaught in...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

May 24, 2012 / 8:00 am

I walked into the new Train Station Pub for lunch the other day with the owner Steven Stinson. He is also the owner of The Keg but this food and drink house has nothing whatsoever to do with that restaurant. This is a partnership between Steve and Tanner Dillon. This is my first time in the...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

May 17, 2012 / 8:00 am

Every week I get emails from readers who are very supportive and help me with things they see around the valley. We have heard that there might be a new Costco in West Kelowna.
Have you heard where it might be located? We can't see any signs as we drive that stretch.
We enjoy...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

May 10, 2012 / 8:00 am

It’s now just months away before the major construction begins on the thirteen Target Canada store in B.C. Ledcor Construction Ltd. has the contract for all thirteen B.C. stores. All the stores have to be finished on the same date. Target Canada will spend upwards of $11 million on...

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

May 3, 2012 / 8:00 am

When we came to the city 34 years ago there wasn’t much talk about Dilworth Mountain. It was just up there. The developer from Calgary, Jack Poole, co-founded Daon Development Corporation, the second-largest real estate development company in North America until its collapse in...

About the Author

John Thomson is the Okanagan's pre-eminent business columnist writing his column, Rumours and Things, for over 24 years. Plugged in to the valley's who's who, John keeps his readers coming back for more with his straight talk and optimistic perspective on where we are headed next.

When John is not writing his column, he runs a sixteen year old think tank called the Executive Roundtable and holds his popular "Thomson Presents" quarterly business speaker seminars.

Have a comment, question, or tip for John? 

E-mail John at
[email protected]
or send him a fax at 250-764-8255.



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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