The Steele report

Election day is October 20th If you want to know what the candidates really think there is perhaps a solution to find out. Where I am in Kelowna there is a page showing all those who are running and there is a contact email address and phone number.

For candidates I don’t know I sent an email asking three questions of importance to me and a few friends who are seeking information. I did this Saturday afternoon and there are a lot of people running for office.

To be fair many are at events and door knocking and I don’t expect many answers until Monday. It is my intention to give all candidates a hearing of sorts before I vote. My questions are part of a job application if I were hiring someone to represent me. Tonight at the time of writing this being Saturday evening I have two responses.

The first gave a positive response to two of my questions and demonstrated they knew what they were talking about on two of the three. The last one being about longer term solutions for affordable housing they had no clue. But well done for a first time candidate. The second was a little different.

It was explained to me his issues were not my issues and he demonstrated little concern for what I thought was important. That allowed me to exclude him from consideration.

Contacting candidates in writing is helpful it is a permanent record of where a candidate is coming from and allows you to assess their ability to handle the job. This is one way to contact your prospective council member from your own home and assess their job application over a coffee without leaving home.

Fred Steele

Fred Steele

Art Show continues today inside the FOG –

Top prize Saturday – Fall Art Show and Sale – Best – Diane Gane

Water Colours
1. Isobel MacLarin
2. Linda Payne
3. Tie Janice Goodman and Isobel MacLaurin

1. Rose Ripley
2. Michael Jordan
3. Kim Tighe

1. Bev Alexander
2. David Brewin
3. Tara Hovanes

Restaurant planned for large winery south of Oliver


The subject property (Phantom Winery and Vineyards) is approximately 24 ha in area and is located on the east side of Black Sage Road approximately 9 km south of the Town of Oliver and is seen to be comprised of a winery with the lands under agricultural production (i.e. viticulture). The surrounding pattern of development is generally characterised by similar agricultural lands in the ALR and under viticulture production.

In 2011, the ALC initiated a “Winery and Cidery Policy Review” to determine the appropriateness of allowing wineries to sell other alcoholic beverages in a “winery lounge”. The Commission “determined that the current regulatory regime for wineries located in the Agricultural Land Reserve is appropriate … [and] that wineries who seek to acquire a ‘food primary’ license from the Liquor Control and Licensing Branch (LCLB) in order to offer additional alcohol products for sale must
continue to submit a non-farm use application to the ALC.”

At its meeting of October 3, 2013, the Planning and Development (P&D) Committee of the Board resolved that staff be directed “to draft an amendment bylaw to the Okanagan Valley Electoral Area Zoning Bylaws in order to introduce a new definition of ‘winery’ to allow for the sale of other ‘made in BC’ alcoholic beverages.”

An updated definition of “winery” was implemented on July 20, 2017following the adoption of the “Update of Agricultural Zones and Regulations Amendment Bylaw Amendment Bylaw 2728” and reads as follows: … an establishment involved in the manufacture, packaging, storing and sales of grape and fruit based wines, including a wine bar, food & beverage lounge and an eating and drinking establishment [emphasis added]. An “eating and drinking establishment” is separately defined in the zoning bylaw as meaning “a development where prepared foods and beverages are offered for sale to the public for consumption within the premises or off the site and includes … licensed restaurants …”

In considering this proposal, Administration maintains many of its concerns regarding the approval of restaurants in the ALR. Namely, full-service restaurants potentially diminish the link between the agricultural operation and the retail outlet by allowing a restaurant to exist as an independent
commercial entity. Additional concerns include:
· the erosion of the agricultural land base due to larger structures and expanded parking;
· impacts of more people, traffic, noise and trespass on adjacent farm operations (i.e. neighbour complaints);
· complaints and conflicts with other types of agriculture that may not fit with the “winery aesthetic”;
· pressure for other, non-farm related amenities (i.e. meeting facilities, hotels, spas, etc…); and
· that such uses should be directed to the Town of Oliver as the commercial hub for the area.

Nevertheless, Administration also recognises that the Board previously directed that the definition of a “winery” be amended to facilitate the development of restaurants within the ALR – subject to ALC approval – and without the need for subsequent rezoning applications to the Regional District.

Administration also notes that the Electoral Area “C” OCP Bylaw does speak to encouraging “the agricultural sector’s improvement and expansion by pursuing supportive land use policies …”, and of “encouraging secondary ‘value added’ uses” (provided they are compatible and incidental). Finally, the OCP Bylaw speaks to “maximizing productive farm activity and minimizing areas of development by clustering buildings, structures and related activities” and, in this instance, the
applicant is proposing to cluster the restaurant within the winery building already under construction.

For these reasons, Administration is recommending that this proposal be “authorised” to proceed to
the ALC for its review.

Fatality indicated

Time: 6:33 am – official dispatch time for Rescue Crews

Location: Orchard east of Hwy 97 – just north of the Rd 18 corner. Black, newish, vehicle southbound, left highway entering orchard driveway area smashing into an old shed and the car re-directed.

Driver trapped in car until rescue crews arrived. Jaws of life needed to pop open the passenger door so that paramedics could get to work.

It became apparent the male body was lifeless and was covered up. Two units of EMS on the scene. Police arriving after I left the accident location. Two units of Oliver Fire Department were call for traffic control and opening the vehicle up.

An investigation will proceed but by looking at the scene – the heavily damaged vehicle had to be going at a high rate of speed on very wet roads.

Other news reports later in the day

RCMP respond to 4300-block of Highway 97 for a report of a single vehicle collision.

The driver and only occupant, a 28 year-old from Oliver, was extricated from the vehicle by Fire Services. He had suffered fatal injuries. He was pronounced deceased at the scene.


A single vehicle crashed off the road in Oliver Sunday morning near Highway 97 and Road 16, resulting in the death of the driver.

Oliver fire chief Bob Graham said two trucks from the fire department responded to the incident, and found one man dead after using the jaws of life to extricate him. “I don’t think alcohol was involved,” Graham said. An ambulance on scene called the fire department to help extricate the man.

113 entries in Fall art show – many sold Saturday

Winners List

Mixed/Other Media
1. Marion Trimble
2. Katherine MacNeill
3. Adrienne Herbert

1. Paul Skelhorne
2. Paul Skelhorne
3. Tie – Paul Eby and Val Friesen

1. Rachel Allenbrand/Robert Lacasse
2. Lindsey McVicar
3. Diane Gane

Fibre Arts
1. R. Leslie Forbes
2. Marianne Parsons
3. Margaret Matthews

Emerging Arts
1. Emily Muller (above)
2. Sarah Stanley
3. Faryn Janzen

Budding Artists
1. Laura Harty (brother Kelan made the frame – happy mother right)
2. Emily Bidmead
3. Emma Millward

Talk about cooperation

Oliver Fire Department

Open house is from 11 am-2 pm on Saturday October 13th.

At the training grounds off Cessna Street

and same day in Osoyoos


Osoyoos Fire Department

Open House

Saturday October 13th

1:00 PM – 3:00 PM @ Osoyoos Fire Hall

Truck gets a wash down

Location at Loose Bay on Secrest Hill Rd

First report oil truck on fire. Appeared to be a stolen water truck with smoky brakes. RCMP take charge of truck and looking for driver or owner. Oliver Fire Department made the scene safe.

Time about 2:30 pm Saturday

On the Sunnyside

The Eyelids

When Duet. 32:10 promises that God will guard us as the “apple of His eye” we would be wise to ask ourselves how that is done. We are able to guard, protect and care for the well-being of the eye with the eyelid. The eyelid consists of skin and muscle that provide the following care for our eyes.

Eyelids blink regularly during waking hours to keep the conjunctiva and cornea moist. Without that it would dry up and become useless. Our soul needs regular care too.

Eyelids close automatically if an object threatens to touch the eye. The eyelids have eyelashes that help to keep some dust and tiny particles away. The seventh cranial nerve can quickly close the eyelids and the third cranial nerve opens them. Our spiritual life is constantly the target of attack.

Eyelids spread a cleansing, lubricating and disinfecting liquid over the eye to keep it from being contaminated. The Meibomian glands provide the fluids for this, including tears. A duct at the interior corner of the eye can carry excess or used fluid into the nasal cavity which is why we often have to blow our noses when crying. Regular cleansing from wrong is vital.

Eyelids shield the eye from strong lights by covering it, allowing us to sleep better.

All of this is connected to, coordinated with and controlled by the brain. Every aspect has to work harmoniously with the rest of the body. Eyelids are a small but an amazing part of our Creator’s work. They did not come about by accident. They teach us that we also need to guard, clean and care for our spiritual life.

Thank you, Lord, for eyelids!

Henry Wiebe

Starts today at 3

Fall Art Show and Sale “flows” with art


Overflowing with creativity, Oliver’s 35th annual Fall Art Show and Sale welcomes art lovers this coming weekend. The multimedia arts event includes photography, fibre art, three-dimensional art, watercolours, oils, acrylics, mixed / other media, and two categories for youth. In the competitive portion, a flood of 113 works have been entered. This year, the theme is “Go with the Flow”. In addition, three special exhibits are featured.

The Fall Art Show and Sale spans two days, Saturday September 29 (3 – 9 p.m.) and Sunday September 30 (12 – 5 p.m.), at the Oliver Community Centre, 6359 Park Drive. The event shares the same weekend at the same venue as the Cask and Keg and Festival of the Grape.  Admission is by donation, with a draw to win a tempting wine fridge or a work of art.

Saturday’s visitors can vote for their favourite in each media category, and for overall “Best Interpretation of the Theme”. As excitement bubbles up for the awards show, the classy quartet Jazz Out West keeps the evening flowing smoothly. The live music and dessert reception begin at 7 p.m.

Twenty-eight winners will be presented with their quail trophies beginning at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Honorable mentions will also recognize meritorious work.

Sunday’s admission is through a Festival of the Grape ticket only. Patrons of the grape who visit the Community Centre will discover artistic creativity flowing, not just wine. The popular wine fridge draw continues. Stroll the exhibit and find the award-winning artwork, marked with rosettes.

Many works of art are for sale both days. The show attracts participation from established professionals and gifted newcomers alike. It is also a chance to meet the artists, and learn a little about their work.

In addition to the art competition, both days also feature special displays by local artists.  CreateAbility, a program dedicated to making art accessible, will exhibit work by diversely-abled adults. The RipOff Artists are ten talented artists, each working in their own medium, dedicated to “ripping off” a dead artist’s work in their own style. This year, the RipOffs recreate the colourful “Three People Singing” by indigenous Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo. A tribute to John Salsnek, a renowned Willowbrook painter who passed away last year, will also be mounted.

The Fall Art Show and Sale is an annual presentation by the Oliver Community Arts Council.

Option 1 recommended

Spartan Street Light options

That Council choose one of the following lighting options;

• Option 1 for $10,000,

• Option 2 for $13,350,

• Option 3 for $26,200, or

• Budget an option for street lighting into the 2019 General Capital budget.


Staff’s recommendation is to go with Option 1 and order new lamp standard (standard poles) to use LED light heads to complete the five lighting locations on the Spartan Street project for $10,000.

A more in-depth look into street lighting options from Town Staff:

• Staff looked at all new poles and lighting (option 1) – This option would look at the Town to purchase five (5) new 8.0 m standard street light galvanized poles with five (5) new LED 39 watt (100 watt HPS equivalent) heads which we have in stock and could use.
o This option requires a FortisBC 200 amp service and electrical contractor to wire and tie in which are $5,600.
o Total estimated cost of this project is $10,000 and with a timeline installation near the end of October or early November.

• Staff looked at reusing existing downtown poles from the downtown (option 2) – We found we cannot re-use the older poles the way they are because the base bolt patterns don’t match the existing bolt pattern of the new standard concrete lamp standard bases that have already been put in but can be modified to fit.
o If we could use this option; it would require refurbishing five (5) existing (30 year old) poles by having them sand blasted and powder coated because of peeling paint (aesthetic looks) which would be $1,250. We would also have to fabricate/engineer the bottom of the poles to match bolt patterns of bases for another $1,000. The Town would also purchase five (5) LED decorative light heads (could take 6+ weeks for delivery) to match poles which are estimated to be $5,500. This option still requires a FortisBC 200 amp service and electrical contractor to wire and tie in.
o Total estimated cost of this project is $13,350 and with a timeline installation by late November.

• Staff also started to look at using standard light poles with solar options (option 3) – This option is a little more complicated and may require more staff time to fully research further but here is what staff have learned to date from a supplier we contacted;
o would look at the Town to purchase five (5) new 8.0 m standard street light galvanized poles (suitable for solar installations on top w/davit arm side mount) and use five (5) existing LED (100 watt HPS equivalent) heads (like option 1). Poles are estimated at $4,200 total.
o Staff would have to mount solar panels on top of the pole & mount a box (batteries & equip.). Quotes for set up is $4,000 per lamp standard. (batteries also need to be replaced every 3 to 5 years at about $500 each)
o This option would not require a FortisBC 200 amp service but would need an electrical contractor to wire and some Town labour for installation which is estimated at $2,000.

o Total estimated cost of this project is $26,200 and with a timeline installation by early to mid November depending on delivery time.
In closing, after looking at the three options, staff concluded that Option 1 would be the cheapest option with also the shortest timeline for installation. Option 2 could not be done unless the pole bottom is fabricated to meet the bolt standards for the bases plus would end up being more expensive than option 1 and installation could be further delayed. Option 3 is an expensive option and more research needs to go into solar lighting before committing to ‘standard plus’ technology that is always improving.

Looking over a longer 5-year term of comparing costs (per light) between the three options which factors in the battery change out (each light) replacement/maintenance, initial capital costs/installations and any power consumption;
1. option 1 would cost $2,094/light,
2. option 2 would cost $2,764/light,
3. option 3 would cost $5,740/light.

Think about it with Joseph Seiler


To be safe, feel safety, is to be protected, unthreatened, at ease as a result. Maslow’s hierarchy of basic human needs has the safety and survival needs at the foundation. Food, warmth, without serious and present threat, those are the components of safety. When we are feeling safety we can put attention to ‘higher’ things, like mowing the lawn. Can’t do that if we have a hungry tiger roaming our backyard. Hard to concentrate

They say there is safety in numbers. Can be. Yet, many of us are feeling so alone even in a crowd. How can that be? When I go for a walk and pass people along the way I say ‘good morning’. Some cannot bring themselves to respond. Are they not feeling safe enough, not feeling part of the crowd, like they belong? What might one do? Keep offering good mornings and sure enough, one day, receiving one back

Safety can be learned. It can require courage to walk across the coals of a fire. As not at all safe as that idea can feel, people learn to do it. We can learn to respond to ‘good morning’ too. Takes about as much courage to earn the safety we seem to need. So the flip side could be that we decide what is safe. What threatens safety, in my mind, is all of it. Some of that is real and some total chimera

Safety is also about sensible precautions and staying alert. Walking alone late at night on a lowly lit street could be an invitation to get mugged (happened to me once). It is not about avoiding all things that may feel less than safe but to enter each adventure with eyes open, prepared. Running a marathon without the preparation of training is not an act of safety, and running a marathon is an exciting adventure

Safety precautions are about preserving what is valuable, life above all. Feeling safety from attack, physical, psychological. Safety leaves capacity for enjoyment of the higher levels on Maslow’s hierarchy, the arts, intellectual and spiritual growth and contribution. Contribution, giving back, is the entry point to the evolution of our species. That seems pretty important. Safety at home and at work are important.

Rick Machial for water councillor

I have lived in Oliver for all of my life. I grew up on farm and learned early that water was the life blood of our tree’s. I still remember changing long aluminum pipes by hand and was sure happy when solid set irrigation was introduced.

I went to school  and graduated from S.O.S.S. I married early as most people did back then. My wife Cathy and I have three grown children two of them also call Oliver their home.

I decided early that farming was what I wanted to do. I also become involved with the political end of farming, representing Oliver as a delegate to the BCFGA for many years. I also sat on the rural APC as a member for many years and as chairman for two rural directors. Was elected to the SOLID board in my mid 20’s, when SOLID was dissolved, I ran and was elected as a water councilor and have served on council in that capacity ever since.

In my early 30’s along with my brother we started a fruit packing business called Fairview Orchards LTD. It has grown over the years and we currently employ 20 people from our community. We pack fruit for approximately 35 farmers along with our own fruit.

My focus on council has always been to insure that the views of rural residents are listened to at the council table with respect to water matters.

Accomplishment’s that I am proud to have given direction on include Canal rehabilitation in early 1990’s, Twinning of the domestic lines in the rural area to get all rural residents drinking clean potable water.

Going forward many issues require effective strong representation. The resolution to the Gallagher lake siphon issue and also the implementation of a new canal rehabilitation study are two that come to mind.

I have always had two main goals in mind; 1. insure that we have a reliable water source for irrigation. 2. Having a safe reliable source for domestic water all the while at a price that remains affordable to the users.

I have the experience and willingness to continue to represent rural residents on council and look forward to their support on voting day

Shelter for women – gets a boost

Donation received  earmarked for Oliver/Osoyoos safe house.

Sad to say that there are still many women in our area facing physical and mental abuse.  Sometimes they have to get out of the home in a hurry to avoid facing physical harm. Many women have no family in the area and have to turn elsewhere for immediate help.  This is where the local “safe house” comes into the picture.  Women, quite often with children in tow, need a safe haven for several days while a more permanent solution is found.

The members of the Order of the Easter Star hold a fund raising hot dog sale each year, to assist these women.  This year the men of Southern Gate Masonic Lodge also decided to put on their own hot dog sale to help the cause.

Pictured are: Chuck Guild, Worshipful Master of the lodge and Alice Mathews, Worthy Matron of the local Eastern Star chapter, with Marieze Tarr, director of Desert Sun Counselling group, who run the safe house.

Photo and article submitted by Pat Whalley

People so hungry that they steal from a community garden

The Oliver Community Gardens have had a successful season, with beds fully rented, a new compost program, and increased donations to the Food Bank.

The rented and food bank beds are all tagged, but theft of produce has been a problem this summer. This is particularly disappointing for the students participating in the “Young Farmer” program. It is a “community garden”, but that does not mean help yourself.

Photo and words by Sandra Smith

David Machial – for Oliver Water Councillor

I am a 3rd generation apple/cherry farmer, whose family has been growing tree fruits in rural Oliver since my grandparents came to Canada from Portugal in the 1960s.  I have been farming my parent’s, Joe and Anna Machial, 11 acre orchard for the past 15 years, but like anyone who was raised on a orchard, I have worked in the tree fruit industry my entire life.

After graduating  from SOSS in 2001 (Go Hornets), I attended UBC Vancouver where I completed my Bachelor of Commerce, graduating with honours.  Instead of moving to Toronto to pursue a career in market research, I chose to return to Oliver to continue the family tradition of farming, and help my Dad and Uncle Rick at their packinghouse, Fairview Orchards.

I want to be your water councillor because I think it is important to have someone on council who represents the interests and perspective of the next generation of farmers.  Since I am at the beginning of my career, today’s decisions about water will have a greater impact on young farmers like me for a longer period of time.  As a result, I think it is important to be part of those decisions.

However, I also believe experience is very important.  As someone with a Bachelor of Commerce, I have the the skills necessary for understanding financial statements, scrutinizing budgets, and analysing capital projects.

In 2004, I was the Research Coordinator for the Oliver and District C Economic Development Society where I worked on the development of an Agricultural Area Plan for rural Oliver.  Consequently, I am familiar with the challenges facing farmers at the farm level and from a regional governance perspective.

I was also a Director for the Summerland Varieties Corporation and I am currently a Director for the BC Tree Fruit Growers’ Association.  I believe these experiences are especially valuable since they require sharing ideas, listening to other viewpoints, and questioning policies, in the interest of stakeholders.

If you want a young, educated farmer, with Director experience, to represent your water interests, then please vote David Machial for your Water Councillor.

Special Event – Friday at the Elks

Elks Lodge #267 Oliver invites you to

Oakie-Dokie Karaoke Fall Extravaganza

7:00 PM Friday September 28

$15 a person cover charge for a burger, a glass of beer or wine

Door Prizes and 50/50 Draw

You do not have to be a member – come and enjoy!!


by Ron Peace


“This image is called “They Are Watching” it was taken in a regenerated forest. The notches cut in the old cedar stumps for spring boards looked like eyes to me. Loggers used these to stand on while they sawed and fell the massive trees.  A good friend Cheriee Weichel just sent me a quote by Graciela Iturbide that often describes my images. “I photograph and exist in the in-between: those spaces where unknown worlds, real and imagined, intersect””

Published with permission – this is copy write material

Driver – ok – extricated from small car

Time:  before 8 this morning

Location: just south of River Rd/Island Rd junction

Situation: ambulance crews and RCMP units on scene.

Once rescue crew from Oliver Fire Department called and arrived – car door popped and the male driver taken to hospital with some injuries not considered life threatening. Traffic impacted for a time but resumed fully within half an hour. One utility pole heavily damaged. Corner in road the scene of many accidents.