Events in the Okanagan – September
Feeling blue about the end of summer? Don’t worry, the Okanagan is still lively throughout autumn. There’s plenty of events to get you excited this September, perfect for an end-of-summer holiday.
Most of the vineyards and wineries are participating in Wine Festivals this month, so why not add an evening of fine dining to your calendar?
- For starters, we have Mission Hill Family Estate who have the last night of their Long Table Dinner event on September 2nd. This event starts at 6 pm and provides you with a three course dinner, a selection of wines and a stroll through the rolling hills of the estate. For $129 a person, this evening is sure to be an elegant affair – don’t miss out on tickets, purchase them now!
- If that doesn’t take your fancy, then how about attending Under the Half Barrel Dinner series at Cedar Creek Winery on September 8th. From $95 you can treat yourself to a wonderful meal paired with some beautiful wines whilst looking over at Lake Okanagan. What’s more picturesque than that?
- The end of September brings about another couple of vineyard events such as St Hubertus & Oak Bay Estate Winery Lunch. This long table lunch aims to celebrate the start of the harvest and is set to be a lovely afternoon on September 30th. Also on this date, is the Starry Plates Winemakers Dinner – another Okanagan Wine Festival! Do you see a trend here? This one is also at Cedar Creek Winery and they welcome you to a starlight sky and delicious canapes. We recommend checking out these events to get the most out of your Okanagan stay – these are one-off occasions that you can’t experience on a wine tour!
- Besides the wine, the Okanagan has a range of other activities happening during this month. Celebrate the beginning of the fall by participating or attending the Kelowna Wine Country Half Marathon on September 3rd. There’s nothing like team spirit, and a pair of running shoes!
- Maybe you’re not a fan of running, in which case why not look into the Okanagan Grape Escape – MS Bike event. This is a two-day bike riding event on the 9th and 10th of September. This event is one of the biggest fundraising biking events in North America and has been happening since 1989! Join other cyclists and participate in this exciting opportunity to explore the Okanagan region. If it’s too late for you to sign up, then follow the route (which takes you around a LOT of vineyards) and wave to the riders as they pass you.
The Quirky ones
We’ve rounded up the random, the weird and the one-off’s in the below list of events. Whatever you choose to do in September, we’re sure you’ll have a blast!
- Ever wanted to try out five different types of ribs? Attend Ribfest Kelowna between September 15th & 17th for your chance to taste some mouth-watering meats.
- On the subject of meat, why not pop along to the Great Canadian Bacon Chase on September 24th. Somewhat contradictory, this event is all about eating unlimited bacon but also participating in a 5km run! There’s also a way to get out of the running, if you’re more interested in the bacon… Check out their website for more details!
- For those of you into reading tarot cards and natural health care, then we suggest you check out the Holistic Market and Psychic Fair on September 17th at the Laurel Packinghouse. With over 50 exhibitors, this is sure to be a wonderful day and you’ll likely come home with some new knowledge of naturopath techniques.
- And lastly for the art wizards, take a look at the Art in the Park – Vineyard Trails series. On September 24th, Quail’s Gate Winery is hosting this presentation of local artwork. This will be the closing day of this travelling art series, so we hope you’ll make an effort to attend. Let us know your favourite artist or art piece!
That’s all for now. We hope you enjoy the beginning of Autumn – let’s hope it’s a bright and colourful one.
Written by Hannah Poaros
Summer Events in the Okanagan – July
So you’ve got to your La Casa Cottage and you’re wondering what to do next? There’s a lot happening across the Okanagan this summer, especially in nearby locations such as Kelowna and Vernon. Check out our guide on where to go and what to do.
- Fancy spending your evening at the theatre? Well there is a production of The Glass Menagerie at the Kelowna’s Actors Studio until July 22nd. Evening performances also include a four course meal so why not be decadent!
- If you’re into art, then Kelowna Art Gallery has some excellent exhibitions on display at the moment. We recommend A Legacy of Canadian Art from Kelowna Collectionswhich celebrates Canada’s 150th Anniversary with a showcase of marvellous historical Canadian artwork. While you’re at the Gallery, perhaps pop into The Games We Play exhibition which is all about our love for games! The kids are sure to enjoy this one too. Join their special games night on July 20th between 6.00pm and 9.00pm where they are inviting everyone to come and play some well-loved favourites.
- What about taking a stroll through the streets of Kelowna on the Walking Through Time: Secrets of Early Kelowna outdoor walking tour? This begins at the Okanagan Heritage Museum, features past stories and interesting facts, and operates daily between 10.00am and 11.30am. What a great way to learn about the city!
Wine & Music
- Every Saturday afternoon you can watch local musicians at the Vibes @ the Vine event at The Vibrant Vine. This is sure to be a lovely treat between 1.30pm and 4.30pm – just sit back and relax whilst tasting some new wines. If you’re not around on a Saturday, then they also have various other events happening throughout the week all summer.
- Have you ever wanted to learn a second language? This summer might inspire you to start! At Summerhill Pyramid Winery, every Wednesday you can learn Spanish whilst drinking wine. Drop ins are welcome so why not try something new and make some friends while you’re at it – the perfect holiday past time.
- If you’re keen to try out some singing yourself, then Monday nights is Karaoke Madness at O’Flannigan’s Pub. Arrive at this traditional Irish pub for 8.30pm, grab a Guinness and be prepared to stay until you know all the words to Celine Dion.
Fitness & Sports Activities
- Craving a sports fix? Well why not get tickets to see the Kelowna Falcons take on the Wenatchee Applesox on July 14th, 15th or 16th. There’s nothing like watching a good game on a hot sunny day after all.
- If you didn’t already know, there’s a new quirky fitness trend in town – Yoga with Goats. We’re not quite sure how this has become so popular so quickly, and if you are as intrigued as we are, why not take a class at Hoof Prints Barnyard in Kelowna. They offer classes with these inquisitive animals every Sunday between 12pm and 1pm. What’s also lovely is that you are offered a complimentary beverage after class and a chance to see the petting zoo. Give this a try!
- For those that would rather get fit by practising those dance moves, then we’ve found just the activity for you. Every Wednesday in July and August there is free Dancing in The Park at Stuart Park in Kelowna between 7.00pm – 8.30pm. Check out their website for details of the dance schedule – this is something for everyone!
- For the young ones in the family, the Okanagan Science Centre is showing Dinosaurs Unearthed – an interactive exhibition with animatronic dinosaurs. The exhibition aims to unlock the fascination surrounding these majestic creatures and is sure to keep the whole family entertained! Who doesn’t like learning about dinosaurs? This special exhibit is on until August so make sure to see it while you can.
- If you’re more interested in seeing some live animals, then why not take a trip to watch the Raptor Flight Demonstrations at Allan Brooks Nature Centre. These demos, beginning on July 18th, are offered at various times during the week and are an awesome way to see these beautiful birds of prey take flight metres in front of you.
- Bored of watching re-runs on TV in the evenings? Well if you’re wanting to get the kids outdoors but they insist on watching a movie, you could go check out The Starlight Drive-In. This is one of North America’s largest drive-in screens and there are a range of current releases on show this summer. The only thing to note here is that it is up to an hours drive away and located in Enderby.
- On July 22nd there is the 28th Annual Downtown Kelowna Block Party. This is a free community event with art, food, shopping and entertainment in downtown Kelowna. There will be three stages and over 100 vendors so definitely enough to keep you busy! The event is on between 10.00am – 4.00pm and is a fantastic opportunity to meet the locals.
- Need to stock up on some groceries? Take a wander down to the Kelowna Farmers’ and Crafters’ Market – every Wednesday and Saturday from 8.00am – 1.00pm. This is a wonderful opportunity to scout out new tasty produce and bag some handmade bargains! In addition to the original market, they are also running a Cherry Festival on July 22nd which features cherry tasting, cherry pip spitting and lots of prizes. Don’t skip this one!
And that’s all for now! Be sure to check out the Tourism Kelowna and Tourism Vernon websites for up to date information on local events. What takes your fancy?
Written by Hannah Poaros
Lake Update: June 30th 2017
Happy Long Weekend Everyone!
UPDATE JULY 14 –
One Aqua Park and the swim platform went out yesterday! In addition, with the lake levels dropping the marina is on track to open Monday July 17th!
There’s been a lot of speculation and confusion about whether the use of motorized boats on Lake Okanagan is currently permitted. So to help you out, we’re sharing the most up to date information here for you.
Due to the rising lake waters in the region we have been advised by the strata office that
the Marina, La Casa boat launch, and Fintry boat launch will remain closed until further notice . In addition the strata has noted that they will not be putting out their water trampoline this summer. Please see the update at the top of this post!
Closures are preemptive safety procedures. There may be debris in the water including objects that cannot be seen e.g buoys.
At this time boating is not recommended and low wake/no wake rules are in place. Please see the 2 helpful maps/documents below for more detailed information about low wake/no wake zones!
Water lovers are encouraged to try wake-free options to enjoy Okanagan Lake. Stand Up Paddleboards and Kayaks are perfect for exploring the lake and can be rented from us through Guest Services. Please call our guest services number on +1 250 542 0515 for more information on this. There are also many recreation and leisure activities open throughout the region. Hundreds of parks and trails offer great options for picnics or exploring nature.
Guests can watch for any changes/updates to be posted around the resort.
If you would like more information, please see the advice provided from the Regional District of Central Okanagan.
While lake levels in the Central Okanagan slowly decline, temperatures in the Okanagan quickly rise attracting water sports enthusiasts and visitors alike.
As boaters make plans to venture out on the lake, it’s important to remember that lake levels remain the highest seen in decades and some planning is necessary before heading out on the water.
A no wake, low wake, a guideline for respectful boating in the Okanagan has been created to raise awareness of boating practices during high water levels to minimize the erosion of vulnerable shoreline and damage of property in Kalamalka, Okanagan, Ellison/Duck and Wood lakes.
With some area lake levels being nearly 60 cm over full pool, below are some tips for boaters to ensure their safety and minimize further damage to the foreshore.
Know before you go. Find out which boat launches and fueling stations are open in the area. Most boat launches have been closed for safety reasons.
• Visit cordmergency.ca/map to view the 2017 Freshet Boating Wake Map No Wake to plan routes, familiarize where vulnerable shorelines are located and follow the wake zone guidelines.
• Low wake zones mean no hydroplaning… for now. It takes some effort to get the vessel off the water and results in damaging waves. Wake height should be no more than 30 centimetres (1 foot).
• Large and heavier boats create damaging waves even at low speeds. Extra caution is needed when cruising the lake. Keep in the centre whenever possible.
• Small and light boats should remain 300 metres from the shoreline whenever possible or travel in the centre of the lake when approaching vulnerable shorelines. Go “dead slow” when travelling within 300 metres of the shoreline.
• When operating at no-wake speed, trim the drive or outboard to allow the boat to proceed with smallest wake possible.
• Watch for debris and submerged docks.
Once lake levels reach a more reasonable levels, regular boating activities can resume.
Sun worshippers are encouraged to try wake-free options to enjoy Central Okanagan lakes or the many recreation and leisure activities. Stand Up Paddleboards, kayaks and canoes are perfect for exploring the lakes and a number of beaches are open throughout the region. Hundreds of parks and trails offer great options for picnics or exploring nature.
For more information, visit www.cordemergency.ca, sign up for e-updates or call the information line at 250-469-8490.
5 things to do in the Okanagan Region
Weather conditions are fantastic in the Okanagan right now with high temperatures and hours upon hours of sunny skies – it is the perfect time to plan that summer break! Maybe you’ve heard that there is limited boating on the lake at the moment and you’re wondering why you should still plan a visit? Well lucky for you, there are many activities on offer that can provide you with fun-filled memories. Here are a few suggestions to keep you and the family happy.
1. Indulge on a wine tour
There are many wineries as well as wine tour companies for you to choose from if you are looking to experience some decadent wine tasting and dining. On Thursday evenings throughout July, House of Rose winery offers a Summer Music Series where you can relax in a picturesque setting whilst listening to some live bands. You’re welcome to bring a picnic or purchase supplies at the shop there.
Other popular wineries in the area include Mt Boucherie Winery, Tantalus Vineyard and Little Straw Vineyards. If you don’t fancy driving yourself to these locations (though this does also give you an opportunity to stumble upon some hidden gems), there are several tour companies that can cart you across to a few places in one day.
Okanagan Wine Country Tours offers to take you to 4 wineries in 4 hours on their Tasters Tour Lakeshore Wine Route so you can really explore what the region has to offer. Want to save your daylight hours for other adventures? No problem. Club Wine Tours can take you out at 3.30pm on their Sunset Dinner Escape where you will have the opportunity to taste a local vineyard dinner.
2. Go swimming
Due to the high water levels, there may be a certain amount of debris floating around in Lake Okanagan at the moment. We still believe that there is nothing more relaxing than dipping your toes into a refreshing lake but we understand that this might not be for everyone. To make up for this, here are some other swimming locations.
La Casa Cottage Resort has two swimming pools and we encourage you to try out both of these. Why not practice some lengths and you could become an olympic swimmer in no time!
There is also a fantastic water park located in Vernon. Atlantis Water Slides is less than an hour away and offers hot tubs, slides, picnic areas, cabanas and more. Definitely worth a visit if you’re looking for some wet and wild adventures.
3. Take a Drive to Osoyoos
If you’re wanting to explore some other locations in the Okanagan, Osoyoos makes an interesting starting point. This small, tucked away town is one of Canada’s most endangered habitats. It has a dry climate and is Canada’s only desert. Take time to appreciate the dramatic landscape whilst sipping a glass of wine from one of the many wineries. After all, what’s more perfect than sitting in a vineyard looking out across rolling hills and desert plains?
If you’re not up for a glass of wine, then the Osooyos Desert Centre demands your attention. Learn about the ecology of the area, conservation and habitat restoration with interactive exhibits suitable for all the family. There is a 1.5 km boardwalk where you can enjoy the fresh air and appreciate the desert climate.
4. Dust off those hiking boots
One of the best things to do when you can’t get out on the water, is to get out on the land. If you’ve never had time to explore the Parks surrounding Kelowna, then now is a great time to start and you’ve got so many to choose from! Why not try hiking in Knox Mountain Park? This beautiful park is located in downtown Kelowna. It offers trails of varying lengths and difficulties – all leading to some stunning viewpoints.
Check out our other favourite hikes here.
5. Get Sunbathing
The Okanagan region is known for its superb scenery and blazing sun. In fact the region gets more sunlight than most other parts of Canada! This means it is a perfect place for you to kick off your shoes, grab a new book and work on that tan. It doesn’t matter whether you’re by the lake or by the pool – whiling away the hours under the sun is always a good idea.