Canada Day is going to be bigger and better than ever in Penticton.
“We are mixing things up a bit this year for a very full and fun day,” said Kerri Milton, executive director of the Downtown Penticton Association. “We have lots of multicultural music and entertainment, which was very on purpose. Canada is such a multicultural nation we wanted acts that represent all kinds of nationalities this year.”
Also new for the holiday celebration on July 1 at Gyro Park will be skateboard demonstrations from Freeride and the Penticton Pistoleras roller derby team. Children’s activities, such as an obstacle course, bungee basketball and climbing walls, will be set up in the 100-block of Main Street which will be closed down to traffic for the day. All of the children’s activities are by donation with the money raised going to the non-profit organizations that volunteered to help with the Canada Day activities.
Milton said besides the food vendors and public market they also will have, for the first time, a family dining area. This will include Cue’s, Brodo and Murray’s Pizza, and with the new liquor laws in place adults will be able to enjoy a glass of wine or have a beer.
The entertainment schedule starts at 9 a.m. until the last performance starting at 8 p.m. with the band Flashback on the stage. Also performing throughout the day are the SuperCooligans, UnCorked, Yokanagan YoYo Masters, Cori Derrickson, Levi Bent and many others. The opening ceremonies will take place at noon with the singing of O Canada and free birthday cake handed out.
Quota International of Penticton will be hosting their annual Canada Day fundraiser at Gyro Park from 8 a.m. to noon serving up pancakes, sausages and drinks. Then from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. they will have a barbecue concession open. All proceeds go to support Quota community projects and the South Okanagan Women In Need Society.
The Penticton Lakeside Resort, which has taken the lead on getting the fireworks show together for years, said it expects to reach its goal of fundraising $15,000 to provide a great show on Canada Day.
“We owe a huge thanks to those who donated, both individuals and businesses,” said Brannigan Boyd, director of regional sales and marketing, RPB Hotels. “The fireworks are strictly funded by the community and it has been great that people have stepped forward to do that. We do receive a little funding from the government but it is a minimal amount.”
Boyd believes it is a great way to cap off a full day of events.
“It’s not Canada Day without fireworks. We have a lot of tourists travelling here for that weekend and we want them to have a great time and celebrate with the community,” she said.
The trio of restaurants located in the Penticton Lakeside Resort, The Barking Parrot, Bufflehead Tapas and the Hooded Merganser, provide some of the best viewing spots for the fireworks.
“Oh, definitely. It will be a really great show too because the company we use, Skyline Fireworks, have been with us for years and usually throw in a couple of free ones into the sky,” said Boyd. “We also have the band Joe’s Garage playing on the houseboat and the prime area to see them from is the patio of the three restaurants.
“They are an awesome band that play a wide mix of music so they draw quite a crowd.”
Prime seating to watch the fireworks and the band usually fill up fast. Boyd said people start streaming in to the restaurants just prior to 5 p.m.
The fireworks take place at 10:30 p.m. and Okanagan Lake Park and the dog park will not be open to the public as that is where the fireworks will be set off from.
Penticton Lakeside Resort will also be handing out birthday cake, Canada flags, pins and stickers from the reception area all day.
Also on Tuesday the Penticton Legion is hosting their annual bash for Canada Day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a barbecue, birthday cake and entertainment.
Okanagan Falls is celebrating Canada Day in Kenyon Park from 12:30 to 5 p.m. The day includes an opening ceremony with bag pipes and the Legion Colour Party, live music from Beamer Wigley and Mat Duffus, crafts for the kids and cupcakes will be served.
CANADA DAY PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE GYRO PARK JULY 1, 2014
9 a.m. Fit Kidz
9:30 a.m. Penticton Circus Arts Collective
10 a.m. SuperCooligans
10:50 a.m. Alexis Taylor
11 a.m. Jake Evans/Jedi Dancers
Noon OPENING CEREMONIES (O Canada, dignitaries, cake cutting)
12:30 p.m. UnCorked
1:30 p.m. Tiinesha Begaye
2:05 p.m. Yokangan YoYo Masters
2:20 p.m. Amigo Diego & the Dance Ambassadors
2:45 p.m. John Terbasket
3:05 p.m. Yokanagan Yoyo Masters
3:15 p.m. Dream
3:50 p.m. Yokanagan Yoyo Masters
4 p.m. Cori Derrickson
4:30 p.m. Groov-A-Matics
5:20 p.m. Levi Bent
5:30 p.m. Danielle Savage & the Miscreants
6:30 p.m. Get Bent dancers
7:30 p.m. Bishop Grandin marching band
8 p.m. Flashback
10:30 p.m. Fireworks