Summer activities are starting soon at SilverStar Mountain Resort

Summer fun at SilverStar

The start of summer at SilverStar Mountain Resort is less than a month away.

The resort has released its summer event schedule, which is expected to kick off June 23 with the opening of the bike park.

Opening weekend officially launches with the community cultural celebration happening June 24. The weekend will have live music June 24-25.

The Slay The Dragon Trail Running Race will take place on June 24 as well, with racers taking part in 13, 25, or 50 kilometre lengths. It will be followed by the Hike For Hospice on June 25, put on by North Okanagan Hospice Society.

The resort’s bike paths are sure to be busy July 8 and 9, as Silver Star is the first stop on the 2023 Canada Cup Series. It’s also running alongside the BC Cup and BC Downhill Mountain Bike Provincial Championships.

“Designed to provide competitive opportunities to the next generation of downhill mountain bikers transitioning from provincial race series to international competitions, this collective of events forms Canada’s premier downhill racing series,” said SilverStar.

Another bike race taking place on the mountain is the Juliana Bombshell Enduro Women’s Mountain Bike Race on July 15.

August 4-6 will see the return of the Crankworx Summer Series to Silver Star. All events this weekend will be free for spectators, excluding lift tickets. Silver Star Village will have gear demos, live music, games, outdoor bars and barbecues.

The annual Silver Star Wine Festival will be returning to the resort August 10-13. Devoted specifically to British Columbia wineries, this will give attendees a chance to learn about wines made in the province. The weekend will have wine seminars, wine dinners, and the signature walk-around tasting taking place outdoors on Saturday, Aug. 12.

Finally, coming back for the second time is Silver Star’s Beer & Cider Fest on Sept. 9. It kicks off Octoberfest season with tastings of craft beer and local ciders.

To register or buy tickets for the events happening at Silver Star, click here.


Hello Okanagan hits the road, checks out the scene in Penticton

Dragon boats and more

Vernon's Peter Kaz and David Scarlatescu are back with the latest episode of Hello Okanagan.

This week, the Hello Okanagan crew visit the South Okanagan and check out some shops and market stalls in Penticton and Peachland as well as a dragon boat competition.

Each week, Kaz and Scarlatescu talk with Okanagan business leaders, debate issues facing the region, and promote the Valley as a whole.

The videos air each Saturday, and you can see them here on Castanet.

If you any questions or suggestions, contact them via the Hello Okanagan Facebook page.

Vernon's People Place Garden Tour set to bloom June 10

Garden tour ready to bloom

Green thumbs and gardeners can visit some of the North Okanagan's most envy-inspiring gardens during the People Place Garden Tour.

The 19th annual event will be in full bloom June 10, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

"This year, we have seven fabulous gardens to explore during this very popular self-guided tour," says Melanie O'Hara-Hutchinson with the People Place.

The downtown Vernon community hub houses 15 non-profit, social service agencies and programs.

It also provides meeting space to many additional community groups.

The Richmond Caring Centre is the only other facility in British Columbia that operates on the same premise as the People Place.

All proceeds from the garden tour will benefit People Place.

This year's gardens include a Pottery Road oasis with a creek and ponds – as well as a 'Love Shack', a quirky East Hill 'wild child' full of pollinator perennials, the downtown Community Garden, the beautifully manicured grounds at North Okanagan Hospice House, the Kalamalka Indigenous Garden at Okanagan College, a Coldstream black currant farm garden with breathtaking views, and a Pleasant Valley Greek-Romanesque themed garden.

Tickets ($20) can be purchased at Blue Mountain Nursery (Armstrong), Briteland Farm & Garden, Nicholas Alexander Home & Garden, Swan Lake Market & Garden, The Flower Spot Garden Centre and at People Place in #101 Administration and #107 Independent Living Vernon.


Coldstream lakeshore mansion listed for a whopping $19.9 million

$20M waterfront oasis

What could be the most expensive house in the Okanagan is up for sale at a cool $19.9 million.

The Coldstream waterfront estate sits on 2.49 acres and boasts 450 feet of waterfront on Kalamalka Lake.

Bordering on Sovereign Park, the 12407 Coldstream Creek Rd. mansion is still partially under construction after the original 1909 home and boathouse were removed, taking care not to disturb the mature setting and massive oak tree that dominates the property.

The 16,954 square-foot home has three levels and was designed with massive timbers and abundant stonework to give the impression of a long-established estate, the listing by Priscilla & Company states.

There's also a 1,068-square-foot guest house, 1,000-square-foot beachouse, and 600-square-foot carport and boat storage to go along with a huge dock.

Stone walls and lichen-covered stairways line paths that connect the buildings and beach.

A lighted driveway circles the property and has two gated entrances. The main entrance crosses a man-made, recirculating creek.

Despite the huge waterfront and lake views, the home is "almost a complete secret" as it's shielded by trees.

"If you can dream it, it has been incorporated into the design of this home."

Moving glass wall systems open to the outdoors, there's a spa, seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms, and a 16-foot granite island in the huge kitchen.

The home could well be the most expensive in the valley at this time, if the seller gets their asking price.

Last year, a Lake Country waterfront mansion was listed for more – $22.9 million.

That property on Pixton Road included 10 bathrooms, a 12-car garage and an infinity pool on 0.86 acres behind a with 240 feet of Okanagan Lake shoreline.

It was the highest assessed property in the Okanagan in 2020.

Caetani Centre to relive Roaring '20s forĀ Great Gatsby Splash

Caetani goes Great Gatsby

The Roaring '20s will come to life at Vernon's Caetani Centre for the Great Gatsby Splash next month.

The fundraising event is scheduled for June 24 in the Caetani House gardens.

Duke of Sermoneta Leone Caetani, his partner Ofelia and daughter Sveva arrived in Vernon from Italy in 1921.

They lived a life of wealth, privilege, travel, and luxury until the economic crash of 1929.

Following the death of Leone in 1935, Ofelia and Sveva went into self-imposed exile.

It was not until her mother's death in 1960 that Sveva, now in her early 40s, resumed painting, and her works are now a cultural touchstone in Vernon, along with her former home on Pleasant Valley Road.

The Gatsby event will feature a cocktail reception, buffet dinner, and live and silent auctions.

Guests are encouraged to get dressed up in their best Roaring '20s-inspired outfits.

"Everything will be 1920s inspired, from the food and drinks to the ambience," says Marian Wright, Caetani fundraising committee chair.

More than 30 pieces of art by well-known Okanagan artists will be on the auction block.

You can view the art before it goes on auction at www.caetani.org.

The Voix du Coeur ensemble will perform, and a fully catered buffet dinner will be served prior to the live auction.

Tickets are on sale now at the Ticket Seller. Call 250-549-7469 or order online at ticketseller.ca.

Traffic detour for storm facility upgrades

Traffic detour for upgrades

Vernon drivers should prepare themselves for a detour on their morning commute next week.

Starting Tuesday as early as 7:30 a.m., 27th Avenue will be closed between 37th and 39th streets.

It’s to facilitate crews upgrading storm infrastructure.

“Motorists are asked to avoid the area and find an alternative travel route. Local traffic will still be able to access businesses and residences in the area,” the City of Vernon said in a press release.

The work is expected to be completed by 4 p.m. Thursday, but the city says timelines may change if emergencies arise.

Drivers should expect some travel delays and are reminded to watch for construction workers and slow down in construction zones.

Enthusiasts ready for weekend's Vernon Bike Fest

Bike enthusiasts get ready

Calling all cyclists, Bike Fest is back this weekend.

The three-day biking event is put on by the North Okanagan Cycling Society and hopes to bring outdoor enthusiasts together.

It kicked off today with a ladies ride and refreshments event. Executive director Julie Melanson says the cycling society is geared toward mountain biking, but it welcomes everyone.

“It's just great that it's come together and it's gonna be a great event,” Melanson said.

“The mountain bike community is a welcoming bunch. So even if you aren't a biker, we also have runners in our club, and anyone can attend.”

“This is us sort of spreading our wings into it to celebrate biking.”

Events range from free to $25, check here.

Saturday will be jam packed with events for all ages and skill levels. The day starts at 9 a.m. when interested riders will head up to the Big Ed mountain biking trail together.

A free kids event is happening Saturday afternoon at Polson Park. There will be an obstacle course, self-guided scavenger hunt, bike check at 4:30 p.m., and an art activity.

A music festival will start at 5:30 p.m. with Chipko Jones And Crashlanders performing. A beer garden will be open and tickets for the music fest will include one beer or kombucha. NCOS will have an art project set up at the music festival for attendees to help create.

The society will be holding a memorial ride for a community member who passed away. Melanson says Pete’s Ride on Sunday is dedicated to her mentor.

“Pete was a mentor to me through my racing,” says Melanson, “so that's important to me as well.”

People wanting to take part in the memorial ride will meet at the Cosens Bay parking lot. The society plans for a noon toast to Pete at the Big Ed platform.

The weekend will wrap up at the Cosens Bay lot with a barbecue. People can purchase tickets in advance or bring $5 for a hot dog and a drink.

Fuel prices take 10 cent or more jump at many Interior stations

Gas prices take a jump

One could be forgiven for thinking the usual long-weekend spike in gas prices was temporary – but, no.

Prices, as usual went up for the Victoria Day long weekend, then dipped back down at most stations in the Thompson-Okanagan.

But prices appear to be in flux as many have jumped 10 cents or more again this week.

Enderby retains its title as the place for the cheapest fuel in B.C., according to the most recent posts on watchdog website gasbuddy.com.

Regular gasoline is currently selling for 162.9 cents a litre.

And Salmon Arm isn't far behind at 163.9 cents a litre.

But then, prices jump around, depending on where you're filling up.

In Vernon and Coldstream, prices currently range from a low of 164.9 to a high of 175.9.

In Penticton, the pump price is 169.9 across the board.

Kelowna has a price spread from 169.9 to 174.9 cents a litre.

And in Kamloops, 173.9 cents appears to be the consensus among stations.

Local prices compare to 191.9-198.9 cents a litre in the Lower Mainland.

Coldstream celebrates opening of new $6.9M Community Hall and childcare centre

New hall's a beauty

Coldstream celebrated the opening of its new Community Hall on Friday.

The $6.9-million project was built on budget, says Mayor Ruth Hoyte, and features a 5,200-square-foot hall and 84-seat childcare centre, as well as meeting rooms and a commercial kitchen.

In total, the building measures about 14,000 square feet, said chief administrative officer Trevor Seibel as he guided visitors around the facility.

Seibel said the municipality is already receiving bookings for hall rentals, with two weddings booked for this year, one for next year, and more calls coming in daily.

The hall can hold a maximum of 300 people for a performance-type event and 200 for a wedding.

The childcare centre is operated by Maven Lane and will open June 1.

It's already close to capacity.

The building's entrance is flanked by massive timbers, and the entryway hall contains historical mementos of the Coldstream Women's Institute Hall, which was demolished to make way for the facility.

Some members of the institute attended the opening.

Huge bay doors at the back of the hall open out onto Cenotaph Park, making for a picturesque setting for weddings, celebrations and other community events.

Hoyte said the facility "will make a difference in the lives of Coldstream residents."

She called the finished product "beyond fabulous!"

MLA Harwinder Sandhu called the grand opening "very exciting" and praised the "magnificent building," which she predicted will "bring the community closer."

Coldstream received $5 million in federal and provincial grant funding towards the project.

The municipality estimates hall rental revenue of $30,000 to $40,000 a year.

Return home after Parker Cove flooding smooth for some - others not so much

Back home after the flood

The return home has gone smoothly for some Parker Cove residents in the wake of flooding earlier this month – for others, not so much.

Bev Hunter says it came as "quite a surprise to be able to go home" this week as the Okanagan Indian Band rescinded the last of its evacuation orders in the area Thursday morning.

That followed severe flooding in the Westside neighbourhood as Whiteman's Creek spilled over its banks at the beginning of the month.

Hunter says she was actually already in the neighbourhood, staying at a friend's house outside the evacuation area.

"My house is fine, I'm one of the lucky ones," she said.

"But there's quite a bit of devastation in and along the creek."

Hunter says she'll be spending the next while "getting rid of sandbags."

Willie Stewart won't be going home just yet, however.

There's still no power or water to her home.

"I'm not home yet, we're still in the hotel," she said Friday from the Fairfield Inn & Suites in Vernon.

"ESS (Emergency Social Services) has taken really good care of us," she said.

Stewart says she's waiting for her insurance adjuster to view damage to her home next week.

She's unsure of the extent of the flooding damage, but says "the creek was gushing at my balcony and foundation."

She was back on site for a look Thursday and says crews and machinery are still working in Parker Cove as services are restored.

"It would be nice to get back home ... I'm just taking it day by day," she said.

The OKIB lifted the evacuation order at 9 a.m. Thursday for homes along Falcon Avenue, Deer and Elk streets.

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