Barriers removed at beer gardens and festivals


 VANCOUVER – Festival goers and sports enthusiasts, as well as the hotel industry and its patrons, will benefit from a third set of recommendations highlighted today from the now released final report on the B.C. Liquor Policy Review.

In addition, government has announced its full support for all 73 recommendations in the report. A number of these recommendations require significant policy work and implementation planning, which will be done over the coming months.

The recommendations highlighted today will streamline the application process for special occasion licences (SOLs) and refresh outdated liquor policies around beer garden fencing, opening up new opportunities for B.C.’s multitude of festivals, special events and non-profit organizations. Sports and entertainment venues, as well as the hotel industry, will also see positive changes as the Province continues to modernize rules around liquor licensing.

“We promised British Columbians we would overhaul B.C.’s outdated liquor laws – and we are keeping that promise,” said Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton. “As we release the final report today, you’ll see 73 wide-ranging reforms that will positively affect organizations – from local community festivals to music concerts, from hockey games to hotels – in communities all across B.C.”

Specifically, with the set of Liquor Policy Review recommendations announced today, the B.C. government is supporting:

  • Community festivals and entertainment events, by eliminating beer garden fencing, simplifying the SOL process and moving applications online.
  • Consumers, by allowing the sale of mixed-spirit drinks at public SOL events and enabling hosts to serve UBrew/UVin at events, such as weddings.
  • Stadiums and arenas throughout the province, by increasing flexibility around licensing, and permitting spirit-based liquor sales in the stands.
  • The hotel industry and its patrons, by making licensing changes that will extend room service hours and allow guests to move more freely with alcoholic beverages.

“These recommendations are a direct reflection of the input I received from British Columbians, festival organizers, non-profit organizations and businesses – both small and large – during the Liquor Policy Review,” said John Yap, Parliamentary Secretary for Liquor Policy Reform. Government’s support for these recommendations will help transform B.C.’s outdated liquor laws in a host of different ways – enhancing convenience, sparking the economy and creating new opportunities for businesses and non-profits.”

Once legislative changes are made, festival goers will be able to roam the grounds with a pint, rather than being restricted to a cordoned-off beer garden. This will help decrease costs for festival organizers and allow parents with kids to enjoy a beer and remain with their family, as they might at a hockey game. In addition, mixed spirit drinks – rather than only beer, wine, cider and cooler products – will also be permitted at events like music festivals and regattas, with continued restriction of sales to minors.

“Opening up music festivals to whole-site licensing over the ‘beer garden’ model is a very positive move, “said Bob D’Eith, executive director of Music BC. “This will allow families to stay together at events, reduce costs for festival organizers and make the festival experience that much better for all fans of live music. We are optimistic that this and other positive changes announced today will help to keep B.C. venues and festivals going strong for years to come.”

The recommendations announced today will also affect stadiums and arenas throughout the province. Currently, B.C.’s stadiums and arenas are permitted to serve beer and wine to those in the general seating area, and spirits to those in private boxes or premium seats. Once these changes are made in law, these facilities will be able to serve spirits, such as rum, vodka or gin, to all patrons, no matter where they are seated.

“The Province of B.C.’s recommendations are good news for our fans because they allow us to offer more beverage options, and more flexibility in where we serve them, and they will help our efforts to reduce lineups and congestion at Rogers Arena events,” said Victor de Bonis, chief operating officer for Canucks Sports& Entertainment. “It’s a positive outcome for our organization, our guests and entertainment venues across the province.”

Go Riley Go

Congratulations to the Athletes Selected to the

2014 Team BC Junior Team

Article image

| Jan 30, 2014 |

Congratulations to the 11 athletes selected to represent BC at the 2014 Junior Wheelchair Basketball National Championships this March in Edmonton. The Junior National Championships is an important step for the team towards the 2015 Canada Winter Games in Prince George.

Team BC contains a mix of veteran and up-and-coming athletes, and is anchored by Prince George’s own Avril Harris. Harris, who is the son of long-time wheelchair sports athlete Pat Harris and disability advocate Nancy Harris, is known for his speed and athleticism. He’ll be joined by junior national team athletes Jack Kosterman (Langley, BC) and Aidan Love (Victoria, BC).


“The athletes on this year’s junior provincial team have a diverse set of skills,” said Coach Marni Abbott-Peter. “We’re looking forward to building towards the 2015 Canada Winter Games.”


The team consists of:

Joel Ewert  (Prince George, BC) Aidan Love (Victoria, BC) Riley Martin (Oliver, BC) Ben Garrett  (Abbotsford, BC) Ben Hagkull (Chilliwack, BC) Alec Kendall (Kelowna, BC) Ben Hamilton (Surrey, BC) Paula Higgins (Delta, BC) Leanne Kelly (Richmond, BC) Jack Kosterman (Langley, BC) Avril Harris (Prince George, BC)


Up next, the team members will compete at the BC Winter Games in Mission, BC.

Where are they now?


The Southern Okanagan Secondary School Enrichment Fund has assisted many deserving students in the continuance of a quality education.  This has been done through the establishment of various Scholarship, Trust and Memorial Funds which make annual bursaries and awards available to all students demonstrating excellence in their field of academic, technical, trade or vocational training.  One of these scholarships is the Francis Family Scholarship.

We would like to highlight some of our past scholarship winners so you can see how important it is to support and encourage our graduating students.

Nikki Cescon (nee Houle) was the recipient of the 2002 Francis Family Scholarships. Her proud parents are Norm and Shirley Houle of Oliver.

Nikki attended Okanagan University College where she completed a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. Upon completion of university, she was hired at Kelowna Flightcraft. She started as a Human Resources Assistant and was soon promoted to Human Resources Advisor. In this capacity with Kelowna Flightcraft, she is responsible for providing Human Resources support and leadership to several key areas of the Kelowna based business (which employs 1,000 people Canada wide).

Some of her personal interests are health and wellness and professional development. She loves outdoor recreation and camping with family and friends. She is hoping to learn more about photography in her spare time.

Nikki completed her Certified Human Resources Professional Designation in January of 2012. She would like to obtain a supervisory or leadership role within the Human Resources profession.

The Francis Family Scholarship was donated by Mr. Norman Francis in memory of his parents Blaine and Alice Francis of Oliver, BC. Blaine arrived in Oliver in the early 1930’s and Alice came to Oliver during the 1940’s to teach school.  Both were active community members and volunteers.  The first Francis scholarship awards were presented in 2001. Norm Francis was born and raised in Oliver and graduated from S.O.S.S. (1967). He attended UBC and received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Sciences, and subsequently earned a Chartered Accountant designation. He co-founded several technology companies, including the company that invented the ACCPAC and Simply Accounting software, and later Pivotal Corporation, a world leader in customer relationship software, where he was CEO until 2001.  Mr. Francis is retired and spends his time travelling, skiing, cycling and playing golf, as well as being an active philanthropist in the Vancouver area.

The Francis Family Scholarships are $2,500.00 awards given to two deserving students each year. Each student must submit a portfolio to highlight their involvement in school and community. The portfolios are graded on organization, academics, school involvement, community involvement, citizenship, work ethic, and self awareness. A properly formatted resume must be submitted. The portfolios are critiqued and graded by four teachers and the recipients are chosen from this.

Nikki would like to pass on to the Francis family her gratitude for their generosity and for selecting her 10 years ago as a recipient of their scholarship. The financial assistance was much appreciated during her four years of university education.

To the graduation class of 2014, she hopes that they pursue a career that makes them happy and allows them to continue to develop and grow professionally.

Local MP to debate horse slaughter bill



OTTAWA –Alex Atamanenko, MP (BC southern Interior) will soon have his turn to debate one of his Private Members Bill in the House of Commons.  “I have just notified the House of Commons that I will be moving forward with my newly introduced Bill C-571 which will impose certain limits on the horse slaughter industry,” stated the BC MP.

Atamanenko had intended to proceed with his bill C-322 but it had become increasingly apparent that the bill did not have the parliamentary support to survive the vote at second reading. Furthermore a legal analysis revealed that there could be a legislative conflict with the government’s new Safe Food for Canadians Act which was not an issue when the bill was originally drafted.

The BC MP says that C-571 will still prohibit the vast majority horses from being sent to slaughter.  “In the hopes of gaining parliamentary support, an exception was provided only for those horses that are raised primarily for human consumption and are accompanied by a complete lifetime medical history,” stated Atamanenko. “I hope that the thousands of Canadians who have stood behind Bill C-322 will soon get behind the new bill.”

Atamanenko has long been a vocal opponent of the current industry practice of obtaining horses from auction houses across Canada and the US that were never raised in accordance with health and safety regulations required of all other food animals. “The fact is that drugs with no known safe limits and are prohibited for use at any time in the lifetime of food animals are regularly administered to horses,” declared the BC MP.

According to Atamanenko, well over fifty per cent of the horses being slaughtered, are being imported from the US where slaughter is prohibited.  The US is not permitted to sell horsemeat directly into the EU, Canada’s primary market for horsemeat.  “It is inexplicable that the EU would allow horsemeat from US horses to enter via Canada.”

Under pressure from the European Union (EU), Canada introduced the Equine Identity Document (EID) system which links a horse, including those arriving from the US, to its medical history for the six months prior to slaughter.  “This is clearly an inadequate timeframe given the extent and nature of the drugs being commonly administered to horses,” noted Atamanenko.

“The EID system is fraught with loopholes and a far cry from what is needed to prevent the slaughter of horses as a food animal when they may well be toxic for human consumption,” concluded Atamanenko. “C-571 will effectively exclude the general population of horses from being considered eligible as a food animal and that is as it should be.”

Canada Post seems to be delaying “its progress”

mail box

Canada Post is committed to ensuring that the transition of delivery service in Canadian communities will be handled responsibly and with respect towards customers and municipalities. The principles are:

  • Canada Post recognizes that dense urban cores in our larger cities, with their older neighbourhoods and smaller lots, present different challenges for locating community mailboxes than suburban areas. Accordingly, Canada Post will leave the majority of these areas until the final stage of this multi-year project. The postal service will take the necessary time to understand their unique needs and find solutions that work for these neighbourhoods.
  • There will be no change in delivery to people living in apartment buildings, seniors’ buildings and condominiums who already have mail delivered in the building lobby. In addition, customers who have mail delivered to a rural mailbox (a customer-owned mailbox at the end of a driveway) will not be affected by this change.
  • The postal service will work with community leaders and municipal planning officials to choose safe and appropriate sites. Canada Post will seek the views of affected citizens directly, through multiple channels including direct mail surveys and online feedback tools.
  • Canada Post will respect the needs of businesses to have mail delivered to their door. The vast majority of business addresses will continue to have mail and parcels delivered to their door and will experience no change. The businesses that will continue to have delivery to the door:
    • are located in well-established business areas, such as main streets or “business corridors”
    • or receive a relatively large volume of mail or parcels.

The conversion of delivery at the door to community mailbox delivery will have no impact on the two thirds of Canadian households that already receive their mail and parcels through community mailboxes, grouped or lobby mailboxes or rural mailboxes.

Canada Post expects nearly 15,000 employees to retire or leave the company over the next five years. This is more than enough to allow for the reduction of between 6,000 and 8,000 positions, mainly through attrition.

Sponsored in part by Oliver Daily News

The Okanagan Similkameen Healthy Living Fair Society is thrilled to be hosting another Healthy Living Fair at the Penticton Trade & Convention Centre Saturday March 8, 2014.

The Healthy Living Fair is designed to connect large numbers of interested people with commercial, non-profit and professional providers of services that support a healthy lifestyle. The FREE event will host speakers, activity demos, health eating sessions, family entertainment, over 45 different organizations and various ‘health assessment stations’ in which the general public will receive one-on-one reviews and information related to their inquiries.

When: Saturday, March 8th 2014 from 9am – 4pm

Where: Penticton Trade & Convention Centre

Who: Free to the whole community

What time: 9:00 am: Doors open

9:10 am: Opening ceremonies on the main stage;

9:15 am – 10:00 am: Keynote Speaker: Joy McCarthy on the main stage;

9:00 am – 4:00 pm: over 45 different healthy living related resource booths to visit; pre-register to participate in the ‘healthy living assessment’;

10:00 am – 4:00 pm: at various times throughout the day there will be physical activity demos; quiet room demos; healthy living sessions; hearing screening provided by Connect Hearing; a family activity area with a bouncy castle, face painting and entertainment brought to you by Communities for Kids/Success by 6 and so, so much more!


Follow the event on Twitter: @OSHealthyLiving – Hashtag: #OSHLS and Facebook: Okanagan-Similkameen Healthy Living Fair

Dog mauled by bobcat?

walnut22 Picture of Walnut Ave off Sawmill Rd.

On January 28, 2014 the Oliver Detachment of the RCMP received a report that two dogs, associated to a residence on Sawmill Road, Oliver BC appeared to have been mauled by a wild animal, possibly a Bobcat.  The area Conservation Office was advised and will determine the need for follow up by their Agency.

On January 28, 2014 at ~ 20:00 Hours Oliver RCMP received a report of a single vehicle rollover on Fairview Rd heading towards Ripley Lake. Investigator located a group of Oliver teenagers, one of which was the driver of the 2001 Subaru Forester. Investigation showed that the driver was driving too fast around a sharp corner and lost control.  The young driver was a issued Violation Tickets for Fail to Keep Right and Drive Contrary to Restriction.

If you see crime happen call Crime Stoppers or your nearest RCMP detachment.

Learning event – upcoming

Culturally Welcoming Non-Profit

Creating a Culturally Welcoming Non-profit Society

Thursday, Feb 13
6239 Main Street, Oliver
(South Okanagan Immigrant & Community Services office)
Time: 8:30-2:00

Register:  1 888 576-5661

The South Okanagan Similkameen Volunteer Centre is hosting a Learning Event in Oliver on Creating a Culturally Welcoming Non-profit. The presentations and discussions will focus on the role that our non-profit societies have in a democracy. Codes of conduct, guiding principles and policies that could enhance this role will be provided. You will hear new Canadians talk about their experience adapting to the Canadian culture. How do you create a society that is open and diverse? How do you ensure that your volunteer programs are open and diverse (including Board recruitment and make-up)? What are the advantages to being a culturally welcoming society? Will funding sources be more receptive to organizations with a diversity policy and inclusive mission statements?

Registration is free. Morning coffee and lunch provided. This is a great opportunity to join with other Board members and staff to look at developing common practices to create welcoming environments.

Take note – a busy afternoon at SOSS Feb. 6th

Southern Okanagan Secondary School Grand Opening – February 6, 2014

Community members, staff from neighbouring schools, parents and students are invited to join in the celebration of the Grand Opening of Southern Okanagan Secondary School.  The official ceremony will take place from 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm in the school gymnasium.  Tours and events will follow from 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm.

Grand Opening Ceremony 1:30-2:30

SOSS Jazz Band

Master of Ceremonies – Principal, Marcus Toneatto

O Canada – Saige Carlson

Okanagan Song – SOSS & TEN Drummers

Minister of Education, The Honourable Peter Fassbender

School District No. 53 Board Chair, Marieze Tarr

Osoyoos Indian Band Chief, Clarence Louie

Town of Oliver Mayor, Ron Hovanes

MLA Boundary-Similkameen, Linda Larson

~ slide show~

School District No. 53 Director of Facilities, Mitch Van Aller

CEI Architecture Planning Interiors and KMBR Architects Planners Inc, Nick Bevanda and Gregg Brown

Grade 12 Students, Hannah Ellis and Ashley Hiibner

Superintendent, Bev Young

Ribbon Cutting

Closing, Marcus Toneatto

~coffee and dessert to follow (compliments of the SOSS Foods classes)~

3:00-7:00              SOSS main school, Frank Venables Theatre and Neighbourhoods of Learning guided and self-guided tours

Frank Venables Theatre:

3:00 – 6:00           Drama Club rehearsal of spring production of the Wizard of Oz

6:00 – 7:00           Indo-Canadian dancers, Aboriginal dancers and student performances


4:30 – 5:45           Grade 8 boys basketball home game vs. Osoyoos Secondary

6:00 – 7:30           Junior boys basketball home game vs. Osoyoos Secondary

Other Events:

3:00 – 5:00           International Snack Bar in upstairs foyer, hosted by the Languages Department

3:00 – 7:00           Memorabilia and student SmartBoard demos in the library as well as DVD and sweatshirt sales