Winery raises glass to pups

See Ya Later Ranch in Okanagan Falls is going to the dogs, again.

Branch manager Corinne Ross (left) of the BC SPCA and Trudy Carr of See Ya Later Ranch with Hope

Branch manager Corinne Ross (left) of the BC SPCA and Trudy Carr of See Ya Later Ranch with Hope

See Ya Later Ranch is going to the dogs, again.

For the 13th year in a row, on Aug. 29, the Okanagan Falls winery is hosting its annual Dog Days of Summer fundraiser in support of the BC SPCA.

“With See Ya Later Ranch we’ve always had that connection with the SPCA. It goes back to the original owner Major Hugh Fraser who had a great love of dogs and of course he was associated with the SPCA and we’ve continued to be a supporter,” said Trudy Carr, visitor experience manager at See Ya Later. “He (Fraser) was well known in the area and was always seen with his dogs. Every picture we have of him he has his dogs. His favourite breed was collies.”

There is even a doggie cemetery on site with headstones marking the locations where a dozen of Fraser’s canine friends are buried.

Also in their honour, some of the wines from See Ya Later are named after the pets, including the popular Jimmy My Pal, who was actually the first dog he had at the Ranch.

The Major’s light-hearted spirit and legacy lives on in both the winery logo of a white dog with angel wings and the business name which comes from the three-word note left by his new British bride who departed shortly after seeing the rustic surroundings of her new home.

Fraser purchased the property high above the community with a commanding view of Skaha Lake below in 1919 where he lived with his many canine companions for nearly a half century before his death in 1970 at age 85.

Dog Days is one of several specific fundraisers the winery has each year. The others include Puppy Love, which by itself raised over $6,000 earlier this year, and Vine Tails.

As well, a portion of the tasting fees and 50 cents from each bottle of Jimmy My Pal goes to the SPCA.

“What they do for us is just huge and to not have them as a supporter would make a big dent in our revenue budget for sure. We’re very fortunate,” said branch manger Corinne Ross of the South Okanagan Similkameen SPCA. “Saturday is really a fun day, an opportunity for people to bring their dogs and enjoy themselves, we have a silent auction, vendors, live music and more.”

The winery was also named the BC SPCA Caring Company of the Year in May for it’s more than $150,000 in cash and in-kind donations.

Activities begin at noon and run through 4 p.m. The always popular doggie fashion show is scheduled to begin about 2:30 p.m. The winery is located at 2575 Green Lake Rd.