On the money trail

The Rail Trail mystery donor has upped the ante.

Last month, an unknown supporter of the trail that will run from Coldstream to Kelowna pledged they would match funds donated to the trail up to $50,000.

Now, the generous donor will match contributions up to $100,000.

“When I got the update on how well the matching donations have been coming in, I thought I couldn’t ask for a better Canada Day,” said the matching donor. “We have an incredible opportunity to build a legacy for our communities and if another matching offer will keep the momentum up, then I will gladly do my part.”

The Canada Day matching fund challenge got off to a strong start with 153 donations totalling $32,900 coming in during the first three days.

If the first $50,000 challenge can be met this week, then the donor will put another $50,000 for matching funds bringing the total matching dollars to $100,000. The matching program has the opportunity to fund 1,250 metres of trail construction.

“This is an opportunity that we have to take advantage of,” said Duane Thomson, trail ambassador. “If our communities can rise to this challenge, we can fund over a kilometre of trail by working with our matching donor. We need to encourage our friends, family, neighbours and co-coworkers to ensure make a donation in the next few days.”

With the latest donations being matched by the donor, the campaign has now funded 1,554 metres of trail constructions from 492 individual donations.

To make a donation, go to okanaganrailtrail.ca or visit the North Okanagan Community Foundation or the Central Okanagan Foundation. Every $160 donated funds a metre of construction. The campaign is also looking for trail ambassadors, campaign partners and business partners to help inspire donations. For more information, go to here.

Trail Facts:

  • $22 million – purchase price of discontinued rail corridor
  • $50 million – asking price
  • $7.86 million - estimated cost to construct the first phase of the trail
  • Spring 2017 – possible construction start date
  • 48.5 km – length of trail when completed (17.8 km in Kelowna, 2.3 km in Okanagan Indian Band, 16.3 km in Lake Country, 12.1 km in Regional District of North Okanagan)
  • 24 kms - total distance of lakefront, creeks and truly unique natural habitats along the trail
  • 1.3 per cent - maximum grade of the trail
  • 212,000 – combined estimated population of communities along the trail
  • 588,000 – estimated number of annual uses by year five
  • $6.7 – $8.7 million - annual injection to our economy from the trail
  • 43 – number of cultural and recreational points of interest within 500 metres of the trail
  • 1 – number of international airports along the trail


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