March 14, 2024

 News Influencing Thompson Okanagan Business


Kaytee Sharun

Kaytee Sharun, a licensed realtor practicing in the Kootenay region, has been elected as the new President of the Association of Interior Realtors. She will be leading a Board of 10 realtors and taking over from President Chelsea Mann.

Cognito Health Inc., Canada’s all-in-one virtual mental health care platform, raised $2 million in seed funding from StandUp Ventures, Garage Capital, Graphite Ventures, Spring Impact Capital and Simplex Ventures. This funding will launch Cognito’s Ontario mental health services and expand partnerships with insurers, businesses, and government partners.

The Central Okanagan Foundation (COF) is pleased to announce the appointment of new board members for a two-year term: Mark Brade, Pushor Mitchell LLP; Andrew Greer, PURPPL; Daryl Hooley, KPMG LLP; Kim Logan, Anita Parker, and Doug Rankmore. The current directors include Karen Hill, Black Press; Graham Moir, Marni Adams, and Kim Inglis. Dustyn Baulkham currently serves as the chair of COF. Kristine Bugayong holds the position of Executive Director.

The Country Mixtape Tour, which includes Andrew Hyatt, Shawn Austin, and Tyler Joe Miller, will perform on April 11 at 274 Lawrence Avenue in Kelowna at This Country Bar.

The new Mercedes-Benz retail concept debuts in Canada at Mercedes-Benz Kelowna. 

BNA Brewery in Kelowna is collaborating with Third Space Charity for a fundraising event named Pins for Purpose at the BNA bowling alley on March 25. Donations will support accessible counselling services for young adults in the community provided by Third Space Charity.

The Train Station Pub at 1177 Ellis Street  owned and operated by David and Rhonda Lindsay has re-opened after completing its renovation.

An all-UBC Okanagan engineering team consisting of 28 undergraduates won first place in the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race this year in Newfoundland.

The Kelowna area schools’ Food for Thought program, which provides food for thousands of students, is being taken over by the Central Okanagan Food Bank.

The YMCA of Southern Interior BC will hold free seniors health assessments at the Kelowna Family Y on Friday, March 15, to build a healthier community.

The 2024 golf season has seen the official opening of Shadow Ridge Golf Course to the public.

The Kelowna Film Studios, located at 100-1516 Keehn Rd., Kelowna, will host the third annual Okanagan Television and Film Industry Forum on March 16, 2024.

A proposal to increase busing fees for the upcoming school year by $50 to $450 per student is being considered by the Board of Education of the Central Okanagan School District.

Rutland’s Old Town Market, located at the intersection of Hollywood Road and Highway 33, has permanently closed.

The Welton Arms restaurant and brewery, at 890 Clement Ave., has announced that it is closing for financial reasons, effective immediately.

The Central Okanagan Hospice Association‘s 15th annual Swinging With the Stars Gala raised $536,000 on Saturday at The Delta Grand Okanagan Resort ballroom.

On March 17, 2024, the Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Kelowna will organize a celebration to commemorate 75 years of successful ministry.

Maryse Harvey

Maryse Harvey has been appointed as the new president of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce for the 2024-25 term. Vice-chair-elect Derek Gratz of UBC Okanagan will assume the role of chair for the upcoming year, alongside other members of the board. These individuals will be officially sworn in at the chamber’s annual general meeting next month. The board members for 2024-25 include Secretary Patrick Bobyn from Pushor Mitchell Lawyers, Chris Wills from Venture Commercial Realty, Marina Warrender from KPMG, Curtis Tarapaski from Cairo Developments, Carmen Rempel from Kelowna Gospel Mission, Paula Quinn from KF Aerospace Centre for Excellence, Treena Piva from Real Property Management, Amarjit Lalli from TS Lalli Holdings (Subway franchises), Ryan Malcolm from Emil Anderson Group, Laurel Hogg from Rush Ihas Hardwick Lawyers, Sarang Gokhale from Mission Group, and Dobrila Braunstein from Sandhill Winery.



Brittany Lund’s Wattie Rd. Bridal shop is the inaugural participant in Venture Kamloops’ new VK Pivot+ Program, designed to assist small businesses in adjusting to change.

Zale Coty, Mike Friesen, Geoff Luis, Fred Camille, Nazmul Hoque, and Riley Pochay from the Kamloops Billiard Club, part of The Lunch Money Crew, won first place in an 8-Ball pool tournament at the River Cree Casino, beating 137 teams from Western Canada.

The 2024 FireFit Worlds and Canadian National Championship, set to take place from September 25th to the 29th, will be hosted by the City of Kamloops.

Jeremy Heighton

The North Shore Business Improvement Association expects new signage and banners on the Tranquille corridor by September, according to executive director Jeremy Heighton.

A Thompson Rivers University Population Health and Aging Rural Research Centre will now be considered by the board of governors after senate approval. Dr. Juanita-Dawne Bascu, assistant professor of nursing and Canadian Research Chair in nursing and population health, would lead the research centre.

Kamloops Search and Rescue is looking for people to join its Grounds Search and Rescue class in the fall of 2024. They will hold an informational session for potential new members on March 15 at 800 Mission Flats Rd.

A Kamloops event for small business owners on March 21 from 12 pm to 3 pm at the Sandman Signature Kamloops Hotel will feature Cheryl Cran as the keynote speaker. The event is being put on by Community Futures Thompson Country and the Kamloops and District Chamber of Commerce.

Venture Kamloops shared the news about its latest addition to the Accelerate program, Desert City Games. The new gaming shop, owned by Cole Sutherland and Rory Paynter, has officially opened at 171 Leigh Rd.

The North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Ground will be upgraded with internet connectivity thanks to $27,000 from the Canada Community Building Fund, which was distributed from Electoral Area “O” (Lower North Thompson).

The TNRD Board approved Zoning Amendment Bylaw 2824 for 5665 Lac Le Jeune Road in Electoral Area “J” (Copper Desert Country) after a Public Hearing. This zoning amendment rezones a portion of the affected property from LRT-2: Existing Lakeshore Resort to LR-1: Lakeshore Residential Single-Family Zone to create a new residential parcel next to Lac Le Jeune Nature Resort.

The TNRD Board approved third reading of Zoning Amendment Bylaw 2833, affecting 1256 Hern Road in Blackpool, Electoral Area “A” (Wells Gray Country), after a Public Hearing. The zoning amendment would allow agricultural and horticultural uses, subject to livestock regulations outside the Agricultural Land Reserve, by rezoning the property from R-1: Residential Single and Duplex to CR-1: Country Residential. A future Board meeting will consider the zoning amendment, which must be approved by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure due to its proximity to a highway.

The TNRD Board approved Zoning Amendment Bylaw 2838 on third reading after a Public Hearing, affecting property at 1585 Lance Road in Pritchard, Electoral Area “L” (Grasslands). The zoning amendment proposes adding a site-specific regulation to the affected property to allow subdivision and create a 4,900-square-metre parcel for a relative’s home. The Board will vote on the zoning amendment at a later date after the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure approves it due to its proximity to a highway.

The TNRD Board approved first and second readings of Zoning Amendment Bylaw 2839, affecting 878 Harrwood Drive in Blue River, Electoral Area “B” (Thompson Headwaters). The proposed zoning amendment would rezone the property from R-3: Residential Multi-Family to R-1: Residential Single and Duplex to allow a manufactured home for personal use. A regular Board Meeting will include a Public Hearing on the bylaw amendment.

The TNRD Board of Directors has given the green light for Kamloops Partnered Assisted Learning (KPAL) to rent space in the North Kamloops Library for $1,000/month for a period of one year. According to KPAL, the room that is being rented has a history of being a storage space.

McTavish Resource & Management Consultants are excited to announce that they are growing eastward and will be opening up shop in Kamloops this spring.



Dayna Frame

Nicole Dale and Dayna Frame have formed a partnership to acquire Nurse Next Door Penticton.

Bannister Kia Penticton is under a new management team, which includes, John  Dalton, Logan Hannas, Vaib Sharma, John  Sztupovszky, Steele Van Os and Shaun Hucker.

The spring exhibitions organized by the Penticton & District Community Arts Council (PDCAC) will take place at the Leir House Cultural Centre from March 23 to May 17.

Seven days per week, brunch is served at Loki’s Garage, located at #84-52 Front St in Penticton. The restaurant prepares its in-house meals with locally sourced ingredients.

The Penticton Curling Club will host the 2024 BC Senior Curling Championships for men and women from March 19th to the 24th.

The entire 93-pad Whitewater Mobile Home Park, located near Skaha Lake, has been put up for sale at an asking price of $14.9 million.

Heiress Salon celebrates 1 year anniversary at its new location at 249 Westminster Ave W. Penticton.



Salmon Arm Chamber of Commerce welcomes it’s newest member, Nawoc Advisors and Vernon Volkswagen.

Interior Health is seeking Intensive Care Nursing Team in Salmon Arm.

Tidal Elements Healing Arts Studio is hosting an open house on March 16 at 551 Trans-Canada Hwy Unit 6.

Micasa Home and Crafts announced the opening of its Salmon location at 91 Hudson Ave NE by the end of March



The Okanagan Valley Big Band will hold a fund-raising event at the Army Navy & Air Force Veterans Unit 5, 2500 46th Avenue, in support of the Okanagan Military Tattoo, on MArch 16.

Vernon Nissan recognizes Finance Manager Mike Manka as the outstanding employee for the month of February 2024.

The North Okanagan Gleaners are seeking a collaborative partner to facilitate the global distribution of medical supplies, with a particular focus on regions that are economically disadvantaged and afflicted by war.

The Rise Resort proudly introduces The Edge, Okanagan’s newest Restaurant and Events Centre, above Okanagan Lake in Vernon, beyond its Signature Golf Course.

Yankee Flats Meats opened their doors at 2908 31 Avenue. They offer goods from local producers, growers and makers.



A major digitization project called “Growing Community Access to Heritage,” which was supported by the Government of Canada through the Museum Assistance Program, was completed by the Summerland Museum and Archives.

The pier replacement project at Gordon Beggs Rotary Beach will be carried out by Burton Pile Driving, who was chosen by the District of Summerland. The Summerland Rotary Club is still collecting money for the upcoming pier’s features.

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