‘Tis the Season of Great Events

Christmas season is upon us and Kelowna neighbourhoods and spirits are getting brighter as the holidays approach.

The best part if you’re in Kelowna during the season is enjoying all the local events and activities. Meeting Santa, getting crafty, and marveling at the many talented Okanagan artisans are but a few things that make this time of the year so wonderful.

The holiday season is a special time for my family and me, and with this in mind, I thought of sharing some of the fun things happening around Kelowna.

Beautiful Christmas Light Displays

What better way to spend a dark winter evening than walking or driving through a brightly lit neighbourhood. It’s a great opportunity to reflect on a busy day and enjoy the time with family and friends.

While you’ll surely find a stunning light display in any Kelowna neighbourhood, there are some neighbourhoods that take Christmas lights very seriously and encourage its residents to showcase their creativity.

Kettle Valley light display. Photo credit: Kelowna Now

The Kettle Valley Neighbourhood Association held its first annual Light Up contest on December 9th. The event was created to connect neighbours and show that Kettle Valley is a great place to call home. If you’ve always wanted to roam the streets in Upper Mission, the light displays is a great opportunity to explore the community and enjoy the creative displays.

Across town, Wilden is another community that has made Christmas light display into an annual tradition and contest. While only Wilden residents can nominate a house, everyone can vote on their favourite light display. Whether you take a look for yourself or wait until December 15th when photos of the nominated houses will be shared on Wilden’s Facebook page, this is a great opportunity for the entire family to participate in a beautiful event.

Breakfast With Santa

Sitting in Santa’s lap for a photo is great, but have you ever had breakfast with Mr. Kringle?  

On Saturday, December 15th, Santa will join families at Hotel Eldorado for a breakfast buffet, photos, and other fun Christmas activities. In a true Christmas spirit, this event also supports the Central Okanagan Food Bank by encouraging participants to bring an unwrapped toy or a non-perishable food item to the event.

Get Crafty and Enjoy Some Wine

Holiday season can get busy with decorating, baking, organizing, and so many other things.

If you didn’t get a chance to purchase a wreath at one of the Christmas markets earlier in December, or make one at home, this is the perfect hands-on event to add a special touch to your home.

The ticket to the event includes a glass of wine, so it’s a great opportunity for busy parents to have some relaxing creative time while the little ones are having fun at home with grandparents.

Holiday Fun for the Entire Family

This holiday season, the Arion Therapeutic Farm is offering a variety of events from December 22nd to January 8th.  

The entire family can enjoy guided tours, an outdoor playspace, mini horse leading, donkey grooming, crafts, wagon rides, face painting, holiday baking and lots more. Santa is also stopping by for story time on the 22nd and 23rd, in case you missed him at Hotel Eldorado.

Photo courtesy of Arion Therapeutic Farm

Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind”

This quote by Valentine Davies in his story “Miracle on 34th Street” captures what the holiday spirit is about: It’s what we make of it.

It’s an opportunity to spend time with family, and also to support local businesses and organizations. It’s a time to recognize the importance of community engagement and the joy we can find in something as simple and creative as a light display.

You can live here too and see for yourself how beautiful Kelowna is during the winter season! Check out Kelowna Life to learn how.

Lest We Forget

Each year, on November 11th, we honour veterans who have served in wartime and remember the soldiers who died in military service.

Remembrance Day marks an important milestone in the world history. It reminds us of the sacrifices made by individuals, families, and entire countries to end the First World War in 1918 and lay the foundation for modern democracy.

As Canadians, it’s our collective responsibility to remember those who have served and made sacrifices for future generations.  

The Plea

Did you know that the phrase “Lest We Forget” comes from a poem written by the author of The Jungle Book? Rudyard Kipling wrote the poem Recessional in 1897, repeating the phrase several times to emphasize the dangers of failing to remember.

This year we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War 1. The plea to not forget the past and not take it for granted is as important today as it was back in 1918 when the Armistice agreement was signed.

Photo credit: Kelowna Now

On November 11th, the Okanagan Military Museum invites everyone to come to the museum from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and learn more about Canada’s military history. There will be special 15-minute tours throughout the day, each featuring a different topic.

This year, the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 26 is doing something new and special to honour the soldiers who never made it back home and don’t have a gravesite. Inspired by a display in Calgary, the Legion has set up a field of crosses in City Park with 242 names from the two World Wars and the Korean War. The display was set up on November 3rd and will remain in City Park until Remembrance Day.

The Ceremony

Photo credit: The Daily Courier

This year Remembrance Day falls on a Sunday. What a perfect opportunity to enjoy the morning with your family and then join the ceremony and parade.

The Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 26, will hold their annual ceremony and parade in City Park’s Veendam Garden.

In Rutland, the Army Navy Air Force Veterans will hold the ceremony at the cenotaph in Lions Park, followed by a parade.

The Poppies

Last year, the Kelowna poppy campaign collected $184,209.65, an all-time record amount.

This year, the Royal Canadian Legion has launched a digital version of the poppyUntil November 11th, you can head to the website www.mypoppy.ca and get a poppy by donation. As with the physical poppies that you can proudly wear to show your support, the digital ones can be customized for your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn profile pictures.

Digital poppy from mypoppy.ca

Make a donation, wear your poppies and show your support for those who have served to protect our country. Let’s together honour their sacrifice that has allowed us to build a better home for ourselves and our families.

Lest we forget, Kelowna.

You can live here too. Check Kelowna Life to learn how.

Festivals in Kelowna

When you live in Central Okanagan, the fun never ends! From extensive outdoor opportunities like hiking trails and places to rock-climb to endless summer beach days on Okanagan Lake, there’s always something to do when you live in Kelowna. Something else that’s awesome about residing in this sunny area of Canada is the immense amount of festivals that roll in month after month. From August to October, we’ve highlighted four exciting events that in our opinion, you just can’t miss!

Kelowna Dragon Boat Festival
August 27th-28th

Do you LOVE dragon boating? Or, are you someone who is interested in all the hype but not quite sure what it is? You’re in for a real treat! Kelowna’s 2016 Annual Dragon Boat Festival is on August 27th & 28th which is basically two days of super fun times with your friends, family and colleagues. Those who are participating in the dragon boat races can also take part in activities like a corporate team challenge, guts and glory, blindfolded races, random cash draws and of course the dragon boat festival itself! Festivities commence at Tugboat Bay in Waterfront Park.

2016 Okanagan Pride Festival
August 6th-13th

Celebrate diversity and unity by attending the 2016 Okanagan Pride Festival! Whether you’re a part of the LGBTQ community or simply a supporter, wear your brightest colours and come celebrate the differences that make up some pretty amazing people. We all deserve to honour our differences that make up who we are and more importantly, we deserve to feel safe for being ourselves. That’s what Pride is all about! Activities during the week-long festival include Paint with Pride, the “We are One” Dance Party, Green Tees Golf Tournament followed by dinner and so much more!

Kelowna Hopscotch Festival
September 23rd-24th

Not a fan of beer or spirits? You probably just haven’t tried the good stuff! The Kelowna Hopscotch Festival was such an enormous success last year, they’ve decided to bring it back. Attendees will enjoy delicious food vendors and great drinks all while learning through taste what makes craft beer and local spirits so special. Whether you’re a veteran or a novice to craft beer and spirits, this is an event you can’t miss (obviously 19+)! Buy your tickets to the Hopscotch Festival and receive 5 tasting tokens. Tickets can be purchased from their website.

Fall Okanagan Wine Festival (Cropped by Valley First)
October 7th-8th

Wondering why people LOVE living in K-Town? Being situated right in the midst of wine country certainly helps. And with vineyards galore (over 200 and growing!), wine festivals are something residents get to take part in at various times throughout the year. The Fall Okanagan Wine Festival brings in many different tasting events, including Cropped by Valley First. This event is unique in the fact that it’s BC’s largest wine tasting & farmers market combined! Attendees can enjoy sips from over 80 wineries while enjoying a massive seasonal fall farmer’s market.

If you’re looking for reasons why the valley is an extraordinary place to live, you’ve come to the right place. The fun and diverse festivals in Kelowna is only one of the many, many reasons we love living in the sunshine city. If you’d like to know more about local events, our blog is a great place to start! Keep checking back for exciting info on what’s going on throughout the Okanagan. Our passion for the city shines through and we can’t wait to share with you the reasons why!

To find out why people (including us!) love living in Kelowna, talk to one of our personable real estate agents today.