Pack a picnic with some local liquor and take it to the beach in Penticton, through a new program

Picnic season is here

“Stay Local, Support Local" is a collaboration between Castanet and Travel Penticton showcasing what Penticton has to offer all year round. Watch for it every Monday morning.

With the limitations local restaurants, breweries and wineries are currently facing, the City of Penticton is partnering up and introducing Picnic Penticton, a way to encourage Pentictonites to support local businesses and enjoy our city parks in a safe and fun way.

The city is introducing 36 additional picnic tables to local parks and beaches and is re-allowing alcohol on the beach and in several city parks throughout the summer and fall. Penticton is encouraging local businesses to join the Picnic Penticton campaign where businesses will be promoted through the city marketing campaigns, the Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce, Travel Penticton and the Downtown Penticton Association.

The program will launch on May 10, a week after council is expected to adopt a bylaw to alcohol on selected beaches and city parks for the summer.

“This gives people the opportunity for people to grab some good food and their favourite beers and head down to the beach or a park and enjoy a nice picnic. We have great local food and beverage options and people want to be outside anyway, enjoying the great outdoors,” says Kim Lawton with the Penticton Ale Trail.

“Not everyone has a lot of outdoor space so it allows us to be with our bubbles supporting local breweries and restaurants in other locations."

Cannery Brewing will be participating in the Picnic Penticton program and will soon be introducing a brand new Cannery Picnic Pack for $20. It will include Poplar Grove Double Cream Camembert, Cannery Brewing house-made pickles, and garlic crostinis. Just add your favourite beer and you’re good to go to enjoy a picnic with your bubble.

Local and surrounding wineries are also introducing fun picnic opportunities.

“Naramata wineries are looking at many ways to work within the restrictions, while ensuring their guests are having great experiences. A number of wineries are offering picnic options, but are doing it in different ways," says Tina Baird with the Naramata Bench Winery Association.

“For example, D’Angelo Estate Winery has a large outdoor area where you can bring a picnic with you and savour their open space and views. Daydreamer Wines has an area where you can picnic by booking an appointment to do a wine tasting and enjoy your picnic, and Moraine Winery has a park-like separate area with picnic tables."

With several more Naramata wineries offering picnic options and more wineries opening in May, there will be more available soon. Baird encourages following them on social media or checking out their websites and watching for updates.

And if you are in need of picnicking supplies, check out Shades of Linen in Naramata. Along with making clothing, they offer a wide selection of beautiful picnic baskets ranging from simple to stunning.

Picnic-ton was one of the initiatives the City of Penticton's COVID Recovery Economic Development Team proposed.

"The aim is to provide an opportunity to create a positive response for restaurants and our beverage industry,” says Anthony Haddad, general manager of community services for the City of Penticton. “Restaurants, cafes, breweries and wineries can participate and the community can enjoy our fantastic public spaces.”

Currently 37 businesses have registered with the list being constantly updated and being added to the city's mapping system, showing park locations and providing links to participating businesses.

“May 10th is the kickoff for this program but picnic tables are already out and being taken advantage of and it aligns with the liquor on the beach program,” says Haddad. “The Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Penticton Association did an excellent job of promoting businesses when this initially happened and we are building off of that.”

Stay tuned this week to learn more about Picnic Packs which will include promotional materials to participating businesses and fun activities people can take advantage of safely while enjoying the parks.

“We would like to be having events but we currently can't, so this is a fun compromise. We hopefully will be able to later in the year, but we are adapting in the meantime," says Haddad.

The Picnic Penticton program will provide opportunities for further support during restrictions for businesses, with everyone in the community welcome to participate and enjoy the program.

“We are super excited about the program!” says Christa-Lee McWaters with Time Winery.

“Anything we can do to help our local businesses continue on after all these curveballs is great. We’re really excited that the City and Travel Penticton have come together to encourage people to picnic."

Time Winery offers takeout from their full menu and you can purchase their Time Wine, Evolve Cellars and the McWaters collection wines and a great selection of local craft beer and cider.

Kojo Sushi is another participant in Picnic Penticton.

“Spring and summer in Penticton are beautiful. We have long sunny days we can spend at parks at either lake or in our own backyard. We would love to encourage people to spend more time outside and enjoy some delicious food with people they want to see surrounded by wonderful mother nature. Picnic Penticton encourages local people like us to enjoy our own community; Penticton is a dream destination, even if we can't presently travel!” says Michiko Nelson with Kojo Sushi.

“We are excited the program will bring more people outside and let everyone stay healthy and happy!”

Kojo Sushi offers various kinds of rolls you can take-out and eat with your hands in a picnic situation, or if you don't mind using cutlery, they have bento boxes with different types to serve from kids to adults with vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free options.

Be sure to check the growing list of participating restaurants, breweries, wineries and cafes when Picnic Penticton launches May 4, and enjoy a picnic the gorgeous weather in Penticton’s numerous parks and beaches.

Learn more at www.visitpenticton.com and on social @visitpenticton

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