The Regional District of Central Okanagan has paid tribute to former Regional Board Chair and community leader Robert Hobson by renaming the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan at Mission Creek Regional Park.
The centre will now be known as the Robert Hobson Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan.
Hobson served as the Regional Board Chair of the RDCO from 1994 to 2014. Throughout his tenure, Hobson was a fervent advocate for the preservation of natural spaces, playing a pivotal role in the creation of numerous regional parks and greenways. The regional parks system saw the addition of over 1,500 hectares of dedicated space across more than 15 parks during Hobson's leadership, including Black Mountain / snsk’il’nten Regional Park, Mission Creek Greenway, Rose Valley Regional Park and others.
“Each day, residents of the Central Okanagan benefit from the foresight of leaders like, Robert Hobson, to create equitable access to nature through the expansion of regional parks," said current RDCO Board Chair Loyal Wooldridge.
The renamed centre, opened in 1994, will serve as an enduring symbol of Hobson's advocacy, inspiring community members to engage with the great outdoors. The Robert Hobson Environmental Education Centre, home to the parks visitor services team, is the focal point for connectivity to the RDCO’s 30 regional parks and their respective programmes.
Expressing gratitude for the honour, Hobson said, “I am deeply touched and humbled by this generous gesture and accept this on behalf of the many volunteers, educators, elected officials and parks staff who have made our wonderful parks system possible."
Hobson noted the evolving role of parks today in promoting inclusion, diversity, reconciliation, tourism, and climate change response. He emphasized that the centre will continue its educational mission, advancing these important issues as it has previously promoted ecological knowledge.
The public is invited to visit the Robert Hobson Environmental Education Centre at 2363A Springfield Rd from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. Admission is free and there are activities for all age groups.
Until July, visitors can also enjoy the 'Bats: Out of the Darkness' exhibit.