by Jeremy Cook

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At the “rockery” – a tradition



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What does it mean? What is the rush?

Parks Canada to visit Osoyoos Tuesday

Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, Catherine McKenna, will join British Columbia’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, George Heyman, Chief Clarence Louie, Osoyoos Indian Band, and Chief Keith Crow, Lower Similkameen Indian Band, to make an announcement on the proposed national park reserve in the South Okanagan-Similkameen.

Date: Tuesday July 2, 2019

Time: Event starts at 10:15 a.m.

Location: Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre 1000 Rancher Creek Road Osoyoos

Following a Tripartite (joint government) announcement in October 2017 regarding a renewed commitment to a collaborative approach, the Government of Canada, the Government of British Columbia and the Syilx/Okanagan Nation are developing recommendations, including models for cooperative management, regarding the establishment of a national park reserve in the South Okanagan – Similkameen. Recent focus has been on the development of a national park reserve concept, including a boundary, on which Parks Canada sought feedback during a short public consultations in 2019.

The South Okanagan offers a stunning landscape ranging from near-desert to rich forests of ponderosa pine and Douglas fir that support an incredible range of rare animals and plants. This area has sustained Syilx/Okanagan communities for thousands of years.

A new national park reserve will not only renew a nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous peoples, but it will contribute to a network of protected and conserved areas. These protected areas help safeguard Canada’s biodiversity and provide unprecedented opportunities for Canadians to experience the outdoors and learn about our environment, and contribute to sustainable economic development.

Source: Parks Canada

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Storm decides to move to Fraser Valley…..

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A horror story by Jessica Murphy


A perfect May morning with nothing on the schedule but gardening—perhaps, a perfect day.

In the shed I began to gather my tools—the spading fork, the half-moon edger, the adjustable leaf rake, my Hickok loppers, my… That is when I noticed the hose coiled in the corner. I was immediately fearful, it looked like a snake, ready to strike. I shook my head free of the concept, looked again, and it was a snake!

I stood back, took a deep breath and looked again. The rubber hose, with its brass spray nozzle was just that, unmoving, dusty even from the long winter in the shed.

My heart rate up, and admittedly a bit shaken, I continued to pick out my tools. Something niggled below the conscious part of my brain.

I knew that the anti-depression medication I had been prescribed, just three weeks ago, had most likely prompted that vision. One of the side effects was hallucinations. When that is a side effect only, you do not want to know what it is doing to the rest of your brain. But I meekly took it anyway. The depression was otherwise too difficult to deal with, and it made dealing with anything else impossible. Staying in bed through breakfast, lunch and dinner might be a viable diet plan, but not sustainable. Neither is turning off all the lights at seven p.m., so no one knows you are home. Or adjusting your answering machine to pick up on the first ring. Or…..a lot of things.

It had taken some time—and therapy—for me to learn that clinical depression is not sadness: it is just that the word for the condition was badly chosen. It has nothing to do with melancholy or loss. It is a chemical imbalance of a specific area of the amygdala, an otherwise unnoteworthy lobe of the brain. As a chemical problem, it can be corrected with the offsetting chemicals in a precise dosage. Perfect. Scientific. Easy. Except not. Most people prescribed medication for depression have to go through a lengthy adjustment period, as the dosage is adjusted to suit the patient. I was still in that phase.

I had been warned about hallucinations. It’s hard to prepare for one. What is it? When is it? How do I know? But this one I recognized. It is too early in the year for snakes. They do not slither into garden sheds and coil in corners. If anything they would lie quietly behind the bird seed bag, waiting for the inevitable thieving mouse to drop by. No. This was a hallucination.

To prove to myself that I was not afraid of the garden hose, I purposely walked over to that corner of the shed. I needed the dandelion weeding pick that sat with the other small tools, on the second shelf, above and to the right of that corner.

As I reached for the pick, the hose coiled tighter, and the brass nozzle whipped towards my left knee.

Then I remembered: in preparation for seed starting, I had moved all of the hoses to the greenhouse.

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Life inside a Siberian weather station

I have submitted to you an excerpt from my recently released (May 2019) non-fiction book “RUSSIA: A JOURNEY TO THE ARCTIC” about my adventures of staying at a remote Siberian weather station. If you feel this is worthy  I would be honoured and give you permission to use it. – Larry Ritco

Overview of Victoria Weather Station

The camp itself, known as the Victoria weather station, is situated on the eastern shores of Baydaratskaya Bay. The GPS coordinates for the site are approximately 69° 0ʹ north and 67° 30ʹ east, as it lies just inside the Arctic Circle, with that being approximately 66°.

Baydaratskaya Bay is in northwestern Russia, just east of the Ural Mountains and west of the Yamal peninsula, home to some of Russia’s largest oil and gas reserves. It has extremely harsh environmental conditions where temperatures of -50C can occur in winter, and 80% of the territory is covered by lakes, swamps, and rivers.

The snow-covered terrain is flat, frozen, and treeless with no vegetation and perhaps a snow depth of one foot or so. Snowdrifts of four or five feet surround the camp buildings.

This is polar bear country. Although they are rarely seen, all individuals including the drilling crew, who leave the camp area must be escorted by someone with a shotgun. Later on, I was to disregard this rule, but thank the Lord, he protected me from my stupid decisions, and I didn’t encounter any of these beasts.

The sun sets briefly each night for a few hours, so the days are long and bright. After a few days here, there will be almost continuous sunlight twenty-four hours a day as the sun wanders clockwise, staying slightly above the flat, distant horizon.

We never did see the aurora borealis (or the northern lights if you prefer) during our stay at camp Victoria, nor, for that matter, anywhere in Russia. However, I have heard that this country is a great place to see them, especially with us being so far north. Being late in the season, with the long daylight hours and milder temperatures, probably were the reasons why we never saw them.

Camp Victoria consists of a few old wooden and tin buildings. The main building, facing east away from the shoreline, holds the weather station facilities, communications equipment, and is the sleeping quarters for the two or three weather personnel who run it. A small kitchen no bigger than an apartment sized kitchen will keep the cook and his assistant busy the next few weeks as they will feed the twenty-three personnel in camp.

The dining room is small, one table and six chairs. We would take turns when it came time to eat, but the Russians were kind and usually allowed Ray, Peter, and I first seating. A small window about three feet by three feet faces the bay towards the northwest and is permanently frosted up and frozen on the outside. An old, brown cloth depicting the sickle and hammer hangs on the wall near it. It will be in this room where Ray, Peter, and I alongside Arthur our interpreter, would sit many evenings as one of the Russian drillers entertained us with his fascinating Russian tales about life in Russia and his experiences and adventures. Sometimes we all partook in the discussions concerning religion, politics, world events, or sports, but more often than not, it was Mesha who would lead us with his stories, which helped melt away our cultural differences.

A large utility room, or storage area, near the front porch entry, stores all the miscellaneous stuff; outdoor gear, coats, boots, crates of food, and drilling equipment.

In between the weather station and the generator building stands the forlorn, but much depended upon, outhouse. With four simple walls, a roof, and a hole in the ground, it is in dire need of replacement. The first hole drilled by the drilling crew would be for the new outhouse.

Twenty yards north of the weather station is the living and sleeping quarters for everyone except the weather personnel. The metal, rectangular trailer, approximately ten feet by forty feet, sits elevated a couple feet off the frozen ground on temporary wooden ties at its four corners. There is an upright ten-gallon, metal oil drum that is used as a step into the building, located halfway.

As you step up, the first thing you see is a small utility room, about five feet wide and seven feet long, with a simple sink, counter area, diesel fed heater, and a stove in it. This is the wash area, and the room is filthy by all standards. A dirty towel hangs on a nail. A few pots and pans hang on the walls, and there is a kettle for boiling water for coffee or tea. A metal cherry pail above the sink serves as the water supply container for washing. The drip-fed diesel heater consists of a supply tank with a metal tube extending downward to a heating basin and fire. A valve on the tube controls the drip, and thus the heating, as the drip feeds the fire.

To the left, as you enter, is the sleeping quarters for Ray, Peter 1, and I. The ten foot by twelve-foot room has one electrical outlet on one of the thinly insulated blue walls, and a naked lightbulb on the ceiling. A small window on the west side overlooks the bay. The room is sparsely furnished with two old beds, a creaky cot with a thin, dirty mattress, a small chair, and two small tables. This room would soon be home to some of the most hotly contested chess matches as Russia battled Canada: Andre versus Larry for the chess championship of the Arctic Circle. They would be fighting for honor, glory, and valour for their respective countries. Their reputations, what little they were, were at stake.

On the right side of the building is a room approximately ten feet by twenty feet, which the Russian drillers would call their sleeping quarters. The Russians kept to themselves and were quiet. Blankets nailed across the top of the doorways of both sleeping quarters provided the privacy of each section.

…in camp there is a castaway dog that the Russians have named Gypsy. She is a medium-sized dog with a black and white coat and looks somewhat like a Border collie, the kind you find rounding up sheep in Australia. She is probably bored here, since there are few sheep to tend to. No one knows where she came from, perhaps a previous weather employee owned her, or maybe a reindeer herder lost her, or left her behind. But she is friendly to everyone, and it seems her only duty in camp is to be the official greeter to everyone and welcome them, friend or foe (no discrimination here), and perhaps escort us to the outhouse in a particularly stormy blizzard.

In summary, Victoria weather station is lonely, remote, and primitive. It is inaccessible by boat or airplane. There are no towns for hundreds of kilometers. The lone link to the world is a helicopter that flies in sporadically approximately every three days with food, mail, and supplies. Sometimes a Russian herder with his reindeer-driven sled would come into camp and barter meat for canned goods, but otherwise, the camp is isolated. There is no television or radio for entertainment.

In the days to come, we will live off simple meals that the cook makes, consisting mainly of porridge, bread, coffee, and tea for breakfast, soup and bread for lunch, and macaroni or rice and a small amount of meat for supper. Sometimes if an evening meal was particularly bad, we made sure to check that Gypsy was still around. She was. Tail wagging, big smile on her face, she always managed to dodge the pots and pans of the cook.

This is an all-male camp with just the one female…Gypsy…the castaway dog.

RUSSIA: A JOURNEY TO THE ARCTIC (Copyright 2019 by Larry Ritco)

Author can be reached at 250-485-5006 or

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by Linda Isaak

Feeding time

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Eby’s by the numbers

Did you know Paul and Barb came to Oliver two years after they got married.
They had two children – both finished school in Oliver
One grandchild – the pride of all….
Paul and Barb came to Oliver in what year – 1983
Moved from Rockcliffe area house and bought main street store in what year – 1988
Kids both finished school  here? – Yes
# of grand kids – 1
Length of time in photography retail – 31
Plans – to stay in Oliver – live upstairs – Yes to both
Small biz to continue – Contact by appointment only  – by email or phone
H and R Block to move into retail store location in August – Yes, they will take over the passport business as well as the laser copier
Last official work day in retail store  – July 14
Barb and Paul very active in the community for three decades and more.
Time to clap and say -“sure glad you are not movin’ on”
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400 metres of pavement to joint to pathways in Osoyoos

Residents of Osoyoos can look forward to a new multi-use pathway that will improve safety and accessibility for cyclists, pedestrians and all active commuters.

“Cycling and walking are great ways to stay active and are more affordable and environmentally friendly ways to get to work, school and community events,” said Spencer Chandra Herbert, MLA for Vancouver West-End, on behalf of Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “Our government is pleased to partner with the Town of Osoyoos to help make this safe cycling and walking route a reality to benefit both residents and visitors. We will continue to work with regional, local and Indigenous governments to build safe active transportation infrastructure to give people of all ages and abilities more choices to get around.”

The project will deliver 400 metres of paved, multi-use pathway between Lakeshore Drive and Cottonwood Drive. It will connect with existing paths, creating a continuous 10-kilometre route that will make it easier for people to commute through town. This new section will be separate from Highway 3, creating a safe barrier between active transportation commuters and vehicles.

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Total list of scholarships and bursaries $117 thousand in total

117 thousand dollars in awards given out on Monday evening at the high school with half of the graduating classes presented with funds to further their education. There are 72 students graduating in 2019.

28 thousand $$ of those dollars supplied by the SOSS Enrichment Fund Society.


1,500.00 OK Falls Royal Canadian Legion 227 Scholarship
Gordon Broten presents to Brendan Ancheta

1,250.00 SOSTU Scholarship
Lindsey McVicar presents to Brendan Ancheta

500.00 Okanagan Falls Lions Club Bursary
Bob Wilson presents to Sam Anderson

1,000.00 Oliver Chronicle Bursary
Dan Walton presents to  Sam Anderson

500.00 Similkameen Chapter #78 Order of the Eastern Star Bursary
Joan Guild presents to Sam Anderson


2,000.00 School District 53 Trades Scholarship
Bev Young  presents to Sam Anderson

550.00 SOSTU Bursary
Alison Podmorow presents to Sam Anderson

500.00 Bonnett/Hindle Bursary
Jenn Seminoff  presents to Eman Bajwa

1,500.00 Oliver Osoyoos Wine Association Bursary
Sarah Lefebvre presents to Eman Bajwa

500.00  Carson Ruhland Memorial Scholarship
Linda Nunes presents to Mercedes Benz

500.00 Kiwanis Club Bursary
David Williams  presents to Mercedes Benz

1,000.00  Rotary Club of Oliver Scholarship
Ann Hayes presents to  Mercedes Benz

2,500.00 South Okanagan Health Care Auxiliary Bursary
Sandy Jones  presents to Mercedes Benz

500.00  SOSS PAC Scholarship
Hillary Frank  presents to Donovan Blake

500.00  Sabyan Automotive Scholarship
Kathy Sabyan presents to Tim Boonstra

250.00 Desert Sun Counselling Award
Pavan Dhaliwal presents to Kyra Burden

500.00 Bill and Pat Graham Memorial Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Kyra Burden

1,000.00  Riley Martin Inspirational Bursary
Riley Martin presents to Zaiden Burke

500.00  Bill and Pat Graham Memorial Scholarship
Ken Hayes prsents to Zaiden Burke

1,500.00 Ron Powell Memorial/K & C Silviculture Bursary
Rachelle Goncalves  presents to Noah Carson

1,000.00 Kiwanis Club Scholarship
Leonard Gebhart presents to Jonah Cook

1,000.00  Oliver Elks Bursary
Taylor Baptiste  presents to Jonah Cook

1,000.00 Oliver Senior Centre Bursary
Helga Aston presents to Jonah Cook

500.00 Dr. George & Carolyn Cope Scholarship
Janice Stevens presents to Jonah Cook

1,000.00 Patricia Jean Gallie (Blidook) Scholarship
Jan Shannon  presents to Jonah Cook

650.00 Robert McDowell Foundation Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Karlee Crampton

1,000.00 Medical Staff of SOGH Scholarship
Dr Jaco Bellingan presents to Sahil Deol

400.00 Dave Wight Memorial Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Sahil Deol

1,000.00 Dorothy & Ron Bonnett Memorial Scholarship
Rob Bonnett presents to Sahil Deol

500.00 Bhav Sagar Tarn Sikh Temple Scholarship
Baldev Sidhu presents to Manmeet Dhaliwal

1,500.00 SOSS Enrichment Fund Society Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Manmeet Dhaliwal

200.00 Harris & Co. Judith Anderson Memorial Scholarship
Brenda deRoscz  presents to Manmeet Dhaliwal

545.00 Alex and Pat Jones Forman Bursary
Brenda deRoscz  presents to Ramvir Dhaliwal

2,000.00 School District 53 Trades Scholarship
Rob Zandee  presents to Zack Edwards

1,000.00 Patricia Jean Gallie (Blidook) Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents to Zack Edwards

500.00 Old Stockers Hockey Club Award
Bernie Martine presents to Jack Fortune

1,500.00 SOSS Enrichment Fund Society Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Jack Fortune

500.00 Catholic Women’s League Bursary
Lori Martine presents to Jack Fortune

500.00 Maureen Franz Memorial Bursary
Hillary Frank presents to Sophia Fryer

1,000.00 SOSS Alumni Scholarship
Shiela Lange  presents to Sophia Fryer

500.00 Burnett Bump Bursary
Brad Burnett  presents to Savannah Gibb

1,000.00 Kiwanis Club Scholarship
Lee Chic presents to Harnoorat Gill

2,000.00 School District 53 Academic Scholarship
Rob Zandee presents to Harnoorat Gill

2,500.00 South Okanagan Health Care Auxiliary Bursary
Sandy Jones presents to Harnoorat Gill

300.00 Dance Studio Bursary
Leah Moen presents to Harnoorat Gill

1,000.00 OK Falls Legion – Ladies 227 Scholarship
Denise Ashton presents to Cole Hentzelt

500.00 Ivan Walker Memorial Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents to Cole Hentzelt

1,500.00 SOSS Enrichment Fund Society Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Shawn Hiibner

500.00 Bonnett/Hindle Bursary
Steve Podmorow presents to Jagjit Khaira

500.00 Elizabeth Ann Meadows Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents to Jagjit Khaira

500.00 Jack McKay Rotary Memorial Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Jagjit Khaira

1,000.00 Oliver/Osoyoos Aktion Club Scholarship
Mark Westberg  presents to Molly Koenig

300.00 Oliver Ambassador Program Award
Lori Martine presents to Molly Koenig

500.00 James Laird Wight Memorial Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Molly Koenig

500.00 Minnie Egerton Memorial Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Molly Koenig

1,000.00 Patricia Jean Gallie (Blidook) Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Molly Koenig

1,000.00 Oliver Senior Centre Bursary
Helga Aston presents to Kendra Leinor

500.00 Principals & Vice-Principals Association Bursary
Tracy Harrington presents to Kendra Leinor

2,000.00 School District 53 Academic Scholarship
Bev Young presents to Kendra Leinor

550.00 Nick Jones Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents to Kendra Leinor

500.00 SOSS PAC Scholarship
Shani Laver presents to Kendra Leinor

750.00 Robert Fleming Memorial Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents toTaylor MacRae

1,000.00 Kiwanis Club Scholarship
Rosemary Pritchard presents to Stephanie Matevia

1,000.00 Oliver Elks Bursary
Darren Baptiste presents to Stephanie Matevia

750.00 Oliver Legion Branch #97 Bursary
Sandy Askewe-Power/Chris Yerburgh presents toStephanie Matevia

500.00 Oliver Women’s Institute Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Stephanie Matevia

650.00 Robert McDowell Foundation Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Stephanie Matevia

500.00 Mark Crucetti Memorial Scholarship
Shiela Lange presents to Stephanie Matevia

500.00 Rudi Guidi Memorial Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Nathaniel Morezewich

750.00 Murray Family Scholarship
Megan Murray presents to Trent Murray

500.00 Wine Country Racing Association Scholarship
Dave or Kathy Sabyan presents to Trent Murray

500.00 SOSS PAC Scholarship
Steve Podmorow presents to Samantha Sampson

500.00 Kiwanis Club Bursary
Larry Larson presents toSamantha Sampson

1,000.00 Oliver Elks Bursary
Darren Baptiste presents to Samantha Sampson

1,500.00 Oliver Legion Branch #97 Bursary
Sandy Askewe-Power/Chris Yerburgh presents to Samantha Sampson

1,500.00 Soroptimist International of Osoyoos Scholarship
Shirley Corley-Rourke presents to Samantha Sampson

1,000.00 SOSS Alumni Anonymous Donor Scholarship
Lindsey McVicar presents to Samantha Sampson

1,000.00 Patricia Jean Gallie (Blidook) Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents Samantha Sampson

Priceless Quilt
Carol Young presents to Samantha Sampson

1,500.00 Fairview Mountain Scholarship
Rob Zandee presents to Cooper Seminoff

1,250.00 SOSTU Scholarship
Shani Laver presents to Cooper Seminoff

1,500.00 South Okanagan Minor Hockey Award
John Seminoff presents to Cooper Seminoff

500.00 Al Mutlow Memorial Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Chris Shorty

1,000.00 OK Falls Senior Citizens Bursary
Velva Popowich presents to Emmitt Shorty

500.00 Okanagan Correction Centre Scholarship
Warden Debby Rempel presents to Emmitt Shorty

600.00 Class of 1961 Scholarship
Ernie Rotheisler presents to Emmitt Shorty

500.00 Bhav Sagar Tarn Sikh Temple
Mohinder Gill presents to Brendon Somerville

500.00 Kiwanis Club Bursary
Mary Roberts presents to Brendon Somerville

1,000.00 Patricia Jean Gallie (Blidook) Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Brendon Somerville

500.00 Kiwanis Club Bursary
Doris Stretch presents to Sarah Stanley

500.00 Oliver Community Arts Council Bursary
Roberta Barens presents to Sarah Stanley

1,500.00 OK Falls Royal Canadian Legion 227 Scholarship
Gordon Broten presents to Sarah Stanley

500.00 Pat McGibbon Memorial Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Sarah Stanley

500.00 SOSS PAC Scholarship
Rachelle Goncalves presents to Sarah Stanley

1,000.00 Oliver/Osoyoos Aktion Club Scholarship
Mike Holt presents to Abby Teigen

300.00 Oliver Ambassador Program Award
Lori Martine presents to Abby Teigen

1,500.00 Peer Counselling Bursary
Margie Nazaroff presents to Abby Teigen

1,000.00 Sharon Besler/Robert Baker Endowment Fund Scholarship
Janice Stevens present to Abby Teigen

300.00 Dance Studio Bursary
Leah Moen presents to Abby Teigen

500.00 Women of Oliver for Women Society Citizenship Award
Diane Worth presents to Abby Teigen

500.00 Mountain West Bursary
Rod Kitt presents to Abby Teigen

500.00 Oliver Community Arts Council Bursary
Roberta Barens presents to Freya Ware

1,000.00 OK Falls Legion – Ladies 227 Scholarship
Denise Ashton presents to Freya Ware

850.00 Charlotte Campbell Memorial Bursary
Brenda deRoscz presents to Freya Ware

500.00 Jennifer Mapplebeck Memorial Bursary
Jeff Smith presents to Freya Ware

500.00 Kiwanis Club Bursary
Fiona Wood presents to Matthew Wilson

650.00 Shiela Bull Memorial Scholarship
Janice Stevens presents to Matthew Wilson

500.00 Ivan Walker Memorial Scholarship
Ken Hayes presents to Matthew Wilson

550.00 SOSTU Bursary
Jenn Seminoff presents to Matthew Wilson

2,500.00 Francis Family Scholarship
Jan Shannon presents to Kendra Leinor

2,500.00 Francis Family Scholarship
Wende Arnett presents to Abby Teigen

Special thanks to Cheryl Andrews for compiling this list each year

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Are Canadians broke?

Canadians are broke and yet they keep on spending. Almost half of our population is on the brink of insolvency and our mounting debt loads are unsustainable.

While our consumer debt issues are not new news, the problem is still getting worse and people still won’t stop spending. The latest survey conducted on behalf of insolvency firm MNP Ltd. found that the number of Canadians who are $200 or less away from financial insolvency has climbed to a staggering 48%.

The same survey last fall had the number pegged at 40% and it was around 30% two years ago. These regular “check ins” are showing just how drastically the debt situation is rising yet we can’t seem to get people to listen.

When this latest quarterly survey results were released, MNP President Grant Bazian stated that “Canadians appear to be maxed out with no real plan for paying back what they have borrowed”. In my mind, this perfectly summarizes the position our nation is in”.

But simply stating that we have too much debt doesn’t mean much unless you consider what this really means. How do Canadians expect to pay this debt down? What happens if (when) the Canadian economy deteriorates further?

These are the tough questions that you need to be asking yourself now.

The increase in bankruptcy rates are caused by three main factors: Consumers taking on too much debt, rising interest rates and an increase in people losing their jobs due to companies fleeing our un-competitive business environment.

There is not much you can do about our rapidly dissolving business climate and you don’t get a say in the interest rate decisions, but you can take control of your own financial situation. There may not be an easy or quick fix to your debt load, but the earlier you face it head on the better.

In addition to already being on the brink of insolvency, many of these same survey respondents also stated that they expect to increase their debt load in the next year instead of reducing it, often just to make ends meet. My guess is that most people resigning themselves to this fate have not done all they can to see if there are other options.

If you have any outstanding debts and you don’t have a budget and a debt management plan in place, you need to start on one, today.

Most people likely feel like they don’t know where to begin but and many other sites have a lot of information to help you get started. The only thing holding you back is you.

This column is brought to you by Michelle Weisheit CFP, IG Wealth Management and presents general information only and is not a solicitation to buy or sell any investments. Please contact your own advisor for specific advice about your situation.

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Provincial Announcements – NDP does quick sweep through region

A significant expansion to the largest of only three licensed child care facilities in Osoyoos will mean that local parents will not need to drive to nearby towns to find quality care for their children.

“The early years of life are critical in the development and future well-being of children,” said Jean-Yves Duclos, federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development. “Our government is pleased to work with the Government of British Columbia to help families access high-quality early learning and child care so more children and parents have the support they need.”

The Town of Osoyoos is receiving $900,000 to add 18 new licensed child care spaces to the Osoyoos Child Care Centre, the first expansion since the centre opened more than 20 years ago. It will allow the centre to add eight spaces for infants and toddlers, and 10 for children aged three years to kindergarten. This expansion will take the total number of spaces to 61, an increase of more than 40%.

“We believe access to licensed, good quality child care is something that all B.C. parents deserve. It should not matter if you live in a large or small community,” said Katrine Conroy, B.C.’s Minister of Children and Family Development. “This project is an excellent example of what can be achieved when you mix federal and provincial funding with municipal planning and local know-how. It is what the future of child care can look like, and I know it can’t come soon enough for parents.”

The Osoyoos Child Care Centre has strong relationships with community organizations, which it uses to connect families to local wraparound services. Parents who are new to Canada can access supports like language classes through the South Okanagan Immigrant and Community Services Society, while links to the local Supported Child Development Centre will help families who have children with extra support needs to fully participate in the centre’s programs.

“The Town of Osoyoos is delighted to learn of this new partnership grant for the Osoyoos Child Care Centre,” said Sue McKortoff, mayor of the Town of Osoyoos. “The money will be used for the expansion of this local facility to allow 18 more spaces for infants, toddlers and pre-kindergarten children. Investing in early childhood education and care is a priority need of our young families. Expansion of these facilities assists in providing needed quality of life services that make our community an attractive place to work and live.”


More families and seniors in Keremeos will have an affordable place to call home thanks to a partnership between the Province and the Lower Similkameen Community Services Society.

“People shouldn’t be forced to leave the communities they call home to find the affordable housing they need,” said Premier John Horgan. “That is why we are working hard to build affordable homes in Keremeos and other small, hardworking communities throughout British Columbia.”

The Lower Similkameen Community Services Society is receiving $4.1 million from the Province’s Building BC: Community Housing Fund to build 41 much-needed new homes for people with low to moderate incomes. Projected monthly rental rates will range between $375 and $1,440.

“Through the Community Housing Fund, we are addressing gaps in the market, creating the types of homes that people can afford – from growing families to seniors on fixed incomes,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “And our progress to date has been made possible because of the commitment of partners like Lower Similkameen Community Services Society.”

Located at 715 7th St., the proposed project will be designed to include one-, two- and three-bedroom units, including several accessible homes. The three-storey building will also have commercial space on the ground floor for the society’s community service programs and offices.

“The Village of Keremeos very much appreciates the investment the Province is making to provide for more affordable housing in Keremeos,” said Manfred Bauer, mayor, Village of Keremeos.

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SOLD out!!! – Thanks Oliver from NBN

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July 1st 3 of 4

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A new wrinkle

Daylight Saving Time

Now’s your chance to tell the B.C. government whether to keep changing our clocks twice a year or call it quits.

You can answer an online survey and email your thoughts about daylight time.

Most provinces in Canada move their clocks ahead one hour in March and turn their clocks back one hour in November.

It is possible that BC, Washington, Oregon and California could join to together as one time unit all year round.


Previously on ODN – April 3rd

I have introduced for the third time in the last two years a bill to end time shifting. The Bill M201 is called the Uniform Pacific Time Zone Act. We currently live in the Pacific Standard Time Zone (our winter time zone) but since 1918 we have been turning our clocks one hour forward every Spring into Daylight Savings Time and everyone else in our Pacific Time Zone has done the same (Washington State, Oregon and California). In 2018 those States started processing Bills through their respective governments to keep Daylight Savings Time all year round.

Bill M201 proposes that we go to Daylight Savings Time permanently also to maintain a standard Pacific Time Zone. While there has always been a great interest in stopping the clock switching twice a year this is the first time a united effort is being worked on up and down the West Coast. There are a few who do not agree with Daylight Savings Time but the majority have indicated this is the preference and everyone agrees that switching times twice a year needs to stop.

Thanks to the City of Grand Forks who, in 2017 and 2018, put this issue on the floor of the UBCM as a resolution. It passed both times and the ongoing support from all over the Province has encouraged me to continue to push this issue at the Legislature. You can also do your part by sending emails to Premier John Horgan and Green Leader Andrew Weaver asking them to action Bill M201 and Facebook/Tweet all your of friends to get involved.

Linda Larson MLA

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Something new at the track

Area 27 offers a Grand Prix lifestyle with luxurious amenities for the motorsport enthusiast.

The clubhouse is complete which features a 3,200 square foot dining room, high-end members locker rooms, state of the art classroom, and drivers pro shop.

Featuring commanding views of the circuit and the valley below the 2,500 square foot patio is the perfect location to entertain.

Top and Bottom captures : large format taken this morning

The Area 27 Karting track once completed will feature arrive and drive wheel-to-wheel racing. Proper race karts on a proper race circuit provide all the right ingredients for a visceral ‘seat of the pants’ experience.

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Council briefs – Town of Oliver

by Roy Wood

Still no federal funding for busted syphon

Frustration continues around the Oliver council table over the lack of help from Ottawa to pay for repair of the Gallagher Lake syphon section of the area’s agricultural irrigation system.

In a report to council this evening, chief administrative officer Cathy Cowan said officials in the federal ministries of public works and infrastructure continue to seek “mechanisms” through which they might provide funding.

She said, however, all avenues explored so far have ended in failure, mainly because federal programs for water infrastructure are aimed at potable water, not irrigation.

Councillor Dave Mattes said he is “disappointed … they say they are looking for mechanisms, but they haven’t done anything to help us.”

The syphon was destroyed by a rock slide in January 2016. A temporary fix has been in place to serve area agriculture.

The town has developed a plan for a large-scale diversion of the system around the Gallagher Lake section with a price tag of over $10 million.

The province has committed $5 million and Cowan said tonight she is seeking written confirmation about how long those funds will be available as the town struggles to get federal money.

Water Councillor Rick Machail also expressed his frustration this evening. He said as long ago as November 2017 that the town needs to be prepared to pay for the repair without federal help.

Cowan said tonight that she is in contact about every two weeks with officials in Ottawa. At a council meeting in November 2017, she said she hoped to hear something definitive from Ottawa “within six months.”

Firefighters eye two-storey training structure 

Oliver council has endorsed a request from the fire department for funding that would see a structure similar to a two-storey home built at the airport training facility.

According to a report to council, the structure, built from four shipping containers, would mimic a typical two-storey home with a walk-out basement. Firefighters would enter an elevated container and “travel down a flight of stairs to … a lower elevation to locate and extinguish a fire.”

The funding would come from a Community Emergency Preparedness Fund grant, funded by the province and administered by the Union of BC Municipalities.

The project would not proceed unless it is fully funded through a grant.

Sister Cities program seeks $1,500 funding hike 

Town staff will negotiate a new agreement with the Oliver Tourism Association (OTA) and make a budget recommendation to council after the group requested a $1,500 bump in annual funding for the Sister Cities programs.

Oliver is twinned with Lake Chelan, Washington and Bandai, Japan. The result is occasional visits to and from the sister cities, usually by groups of young people with chaperones.

The $1,500 request this evening from OTA secretary Melissa Fowler would help pay for the airline tickets for a group of 10 teenagers and two adult chaperones visiting Bandai.

Chief administrative officer Cathy Cowan pointed out that the tickets are the only significant cost, since the host cities look after accommodation and food once the delegations arrive.

The expired Sister Cities grant was for $3,500 a year.

Council endorses Albas’ looters amendment

Council tonight agreed to write a letter of support for MP Dan Albas and his private members bill that would impose more severe penalties on people convicted of looting during a natural disaster.

Albas is proposing an amendment to the Criminal Code creating an “aggravating factor” for looting cases that occur during a natural disaster.

He said this would require a judge in such a case to “designate a stiffer penalty for those who break the law and loot during these challenging situations.”

In a letter to council seeking support for his bill, the member for Central-Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola said such legislation “would help provide peace of mind for citizens under an evacuation order … as they would know that the criminal justice system has their back.”

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2019 Class Valedictorian – SOSS

Abby Teigen – chosen by her peers to speak to them

Abby will present Wednesday evening in the SOSS gymnasium to a packed house of students, friends and family members along with teachers, administrators, staff and VIP guests.

Her speech will centre in on vulnerabilities. Everyone has them – each student different. Abby will challenge her fellow graduates to overcome those self imposed limitations, fears and apprehensions. By doing so – more of life is lived and more learning can happen in the pursuit of a happy and fulfilled life.

Abby chosen as a Youth Ambassador for Oliver 2017-2018, Winner of the Senior Citizenship Cup last June – active in the school the community and her family. A charming young lady.

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banner grad

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Bikes for books

The last of three bikes presented Monday to Abhijot Mundihar a student at Oliver Elementary School.

Grant Stevely, a member of Southern Gate Masonic Lodge presented the bike. The Bikes for Books program is sponsored by the Oliver Lodge with assistance by Canadian Tire to encourage children to read and enjoy books. The winning student is chosen by the teachers.

For information on the Masonic Lodge, call Charles at 778 439-2294.

photo credit: staff OES

submitted Pat Whalley

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by Gail Blidook

Name the plant that Gail’s butterfly has landed on?

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“We’ve got seeds… and much more”

Two new projects aimed to connect residents with fresh and accessible produce. The Harvest Hut and Edible Pathways projects in full swing for the summer in the parking lot north of Edward Jones.

The Harvest Hut creates a space for members of the community to share fresh produce. Anyone with more food in their garden or farm than they can consume is invited to bring their extras to the hut. Members of the public can then visit the hut and take the produce home with them.

Julie Forster (right) with co-ordinator Caitlyn Bennett

Monday nights around dinner time

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The one you turn to


Alberto’s Mobile Marketing

Here is A unique way to help brand your business !!

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Make an inquiry to

Mike Bell

250 498 7368



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by Audrey MacNaughton

Downy Woodpeckers. Male and young one waiting to be fed.


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by Jeremy Cook

Praying Mantis
on the doorstep in the flowers

Note also the beautiful banner picture of Haynes out-buildings at RD 22 and Black Sage Rd – shown above as captured by Jeremy

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banner Haynes cook

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Connectivity is great for business

Jinny Sims, Minister of Citizen Services at Medici’s

The largest ever investment in phone and high speed data connectivity is a 50 million dollar contribution to remove communities and indigenous areas of the province.

Jinny Sims in Oliver to make an announcement of a joint venture with ABC communications that affects Bridesville and Anarchist Mtn, the growth of housing and services to emergency first responders. Sims says “connectivity closes the digital divide between cities and rural areas creating a lifeline needed to thrive.”

Interesting to note that Minister Sims came with a full audio visual crew, lights, sound systems to a rather intimate crowd of ten people. Two reporters present.

ABC Communications will receive almost Three Hundred thousand dollars to build wireless networks in twelve BC communities mainly in the central interior. The most local project at Bridesville and rural Osoyoos.

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Must be cherry season – showers mentioned for six days

One week to go –

Long weekend and Canada’s Flag Day July 1st and Cherry Fiesta Parade



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“…the gods turned off the taps….”

It looked like a disaster about to happen as the rain decided to pound down when Oliver’s Grandmothers for Africa group was setting up for an evening of Big Band, Burger and Beer. The outdoor evening fundraiser for the Stephen Lewis Foundation was held June 20th at the Firehall Brewery Patio in Oliver. The Foundation works with African community based organizations that are turning the tide of HIV/AIDS.

Just as wet despair was starting to engulf us, the gods turned off the taps and

the sizeable crowd not only stayed dry but responded gleefully when the Penticton Thursday Night Jazz band filled the air with music. One enthusiast summed it up, “GREAT night, great music, great burgers and wraps and great fun. GREAT IDEA.”

This year a just-in-time new order of Woza Moya beadwork came in from a self help economic empowerment project in S. Africa. The intricate, colourful hand work proved very popular with the crowd. Woza Moya provides an income to roughly 350 crafters who are supported by the funds raised through craft sales.

Woza Moya means “Come Spirit of Change” in the Zulu language. Everyone who turned out on Thursday night supported that spirit and had a lot of fun while doing good in the world.

submitted – Marion Boyd

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