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Swing Fore The Cure golf tournament being held all August

Swing Fore Cure all month

The 16th instalment of JDRF Swing Fore The Cure will look a little different this year, but it will make it much easier for many more people to contribute to the fight against juvenile diabetes.

Organizers didn’t know what the summer's COVID-19 pandemic restrictions were going to look like when they began discussing this year’s tournament in the spring. So they decided to go with a month-long event in August.

Beginning Aug. 1, anyone who plays a regular round at The Dunes at Kamloops golf course can toss down an extra $25 to participate in Swing Fore The Cure.

“This year’s going to be a bit of a test run, and we’ll see how it works out,” says Ryan Holowaychuk, who owns major tournament sponsor Noran Printing. “But we have pretty high hopes that it’s going to be a pretty successful tournament.”

Holowaychuk has been involved in the tournament for more than a decade. His son, Ayden, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was three years old. Ayden is now 13, and the Holowaychuk family has become a huge supporter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

“It’s been our life for the last 10 years now,” Holowaychuk says, “so we put a lot behind the JDRF community. We support them in any way we can.”

Anyone who adds the $25 tournament entry fee to their regular green fee will receive $30 in gift certificates from one of six Kamloops restaurants. A long drive competition will be held one day per week, and Royal LePage’s Thom Light will provide $100 gift certificates to male and female winners each time.

There will also be a 50-50 draw for the entire public, and Mastermind Studios will help conduct weekly prize draws for tournament participants on social media.

If that weren’t enough, there will also be a silent auction during the last part of the month. The prizes will be put on the tournament website in early August so people can plan their bidding.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Home Builders' Association wants to build to ease housing crunch

CHBA-CO wants to build

As home prices in the Okanagan continue to shoot for the moon, the perception of many is that they are popping Champagne corks and blowing into noisemakers in the Central Okanagan branch of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association.

That could not be further from the truth, because their employees have to find places to live as well.

“We have so many builders that are second- and third-generation Kelowna born and raised, and they're seeing what's happening,” CHBA-CO executive director Daniel Winer says. “These builders hire local tradespeople—carpenters, electricians, heating and cooling experts, flooring and tile installers. Is talent going to be able to afford to live here so that they can hire the skilled workers needed to build the homes necessary in Kelowna?

“If those people can't afford to have a home here, everything kind of bottoms out.”

That’s why the CHBA-CO was pleased to see the recent release of the report called “Opening doors: unlocking housing supply for affordability,” courtesy of the Canada-British Columbia expert panel on the future of housing supply and affordability.

The report makes 23 recommendations to make housing in B.C. more affordable, and Winer is hoping one of the outcomes is better co-operation among the three levels of government as the affordable housing issue is tackled.

The CHBA-CO wants to see more homes produced at a faster rate, giving more hopeful homeowners more options. The organization believes there are several ways to do that, including the City of Kelowna approving densification projects opposed by neighbourhood associations.

That densification, which is well under way in the urban areas of the Central Okanagan, is another area that could use improvement, according to the CHBA-CO. Winer would like to see densification policies put in place at the same time in all urban core neighbourhoods, because they’re getting done one at a time, but the land values in all of them are increasing simultaneously.

“If land has gone from $100,000 to $300,000 for a parcel, and you plan to build a duplex then you've added $100,000 to the cost of a home before you've even broken ground,” Winer says. “By allowing for densification in a wider area faster, it adds more competition to the market, and provides clarity to buyers, sellers and builders. It not only helps to moderate housing prices but also, because you know the planning in advance, it gets the city to its goals faster.”

Winer says his fleet of members in the CHBA-CO is up for the challenge of building as many homes as possible as quickly as possible, whether they’re single-family homes, apartments, condos, duplexes or fourplexes.

“We need brave politicians is what we really need,” Winer says. “We need brave politicians and leadership to make this an issue and show our renting class and our aspiring homeowners that they're here for them and that they want to support them.”

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Zara will be first luxury condominiums in Lakestone community

Zara first luxury condos

The views will be stunning.

The homes will be gorgeous.

The amenities will be plentiful.

If that’s not enough, the number of activities that will be right outside your front door will keep you busy all year long.

Zara is the first and only luxury condominium collection in Lakestone, 15 minutes north of Kelowna, and it will consist of 86 homes, including six luxury, two-storey penthouses. It will be located in the Lakestone neighbourhood, which was the recipient of the 2020 national award for Community Development of the Year by the Canadian Home Builders' Association.

The Lakestone community has a variety of amenities for its residents. There is a waterside park featuring an attractive timber pavilion, picnic tables and loungers for lakeside relaxation, you can hit the tennis, pickleball or basketball courts, or you can set out on your standup paddleboard or kayak from the dock.

Zara is a steel and concrete building, which will reduce sound transfer and reinforce structural durability to enhance comfort, livability and lasting value.

There will also be there will also be several wellness-centric amenities, including an infinity pool, hot tub, steam room, sauna, spa lounge, fitness centre complete with change rooms, fire pit, interior amenity/event space, and retail space for a restaurant, shops and services.

Architecturally, there will be plenty of stone, timber and glass, which mirrors the surrounding landscape of Okanagan Lake and the surrounding, tree-covered mountains.

Zara is in the heart of the Scenic Sip Trail, which consists of eight award-winning wineries in Lake Country. There are more than 20 golf courses within 30 kilometres. The hiking and cycling trails are endless. There is a 27-kilometre paddle trail. There will be farmers’ markets and chef-led restaurants all around you. Big White is less than an hour away in the winter. Another major attraction will be the fifth-floor SkyBridge, which will be open to all residents and will provide sweeping views of the lake.

The homes themselves will feature premium, wide-plank engineered hardwood throughout main living areas, expansive windows, oversized closets with built-in organizers and natural gas barbecue hookups on private decks. One-, two- and three-bedroom homes will be constructed, including some with dens, and each will have oversized covered balconies for those amazing sunsets over the lake. The one-, two- and three-bed homes range from 600 to 2,000 square feet, with penthouses from 2,010 to 2,600 square feet.

What more could you possibly want or need?

Better yet is the fact that Lake Country is in an area that does not fall under the speculation tax, nor is there a vacancy tax. That makes Zara a perfect opportunity for investment, including short-term rentals.

Zara’s sales centre, which is located at 9678 Benchland Dr. in Lake Country, is open Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. You can register today by visiting ZaraLakestone.com or by calling 250-548-0404.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Unit Electrical Engineering provides customized electrical solutions

UEE set to grow even more

Unit Electrical Engineering (UEE) has made its mark in the South Okanagan, and now it is ready to do the same in the rest of Western Canada.

The company is already one of the largest in Okanagan Falls, with more than 100 employees and 100,000 square feet of office and production space, and it is primed to grow—both through business opportunities and in its size.

UEE is all about providing customized electrical solutions to industry. Whether that is to increase mine productivity, supply power for commercial and industrial sites or to electrify transportation systems, there is not much UEE cannot do.

“It’s our ability to take turnkey projects from cradle to grave, from a high-level concept to seeing it through the design and engineering stages to fabrication, right to the delivery and even the commissioning side of things,” UEE business development and marketing manager Daniel Esterreicher says.

UEE is the company behind the manufacturing and service of linear induction motors (LIMs) for the SkyTrain expansion in the Lower Mainland that TransLink is currently conducting.

“Those LIMs are made and serviced in our little factory right here in OK Falls,” UEE vice-president of operations Rick Marini says.

UEE is an Okanagan Falls success story, starting out in 1996 and getting purchased by Wismer and Rawlings Electrical Inc. of Port Coquitlam in 2000. Wismer and Rawlings provides medium- and high-voltage field service to industry, and recently hired a technical field service salesperson in Kelowna to expand the company’s reach in the Okanagan as well.

UEE is always on the lookout for the “best and brightest” to join its workforce as well. When you are a business that creates unique solutions for clients, those who think outside the box are always welcome.

The company’s Okanagan Falls plant produces everything from medium- and high-voltage electrical infrastructure for industry, linear induction motors, high-voltage cable couplers for the mining industry, commercial and industrial switch gear, and e-houses for industry.

“We’re a very diverse company,” Marini says, “and a lot of our products, they can be used in different applications to suit the needs of our customers.

UEE has also joined the renewable revolution. They have recently worked on a few solar projects in southern Alberta, as well as biogas plants, small hydro projects and waste water treatment plants.

More information about Unit Electrical Engineering can be found here.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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