Penticton Arena Task Force to be created

Council endorsed the recommendation to involve the community and appoint an Arena Task Force

A hockey player hanging out on the bench during a charity game last year at Memorial Arena

A hockey player hanging out on the bench during a charity game last year at Memorial Arena

One of the major user groups of Penticton facilities said it is imperative to maintain what they have built in the community that something must be done with the arenas.

After announcing Okanagan Hockey Group has a $19.1 million impact on the city, president Andy Oakes let his feelings be known about a future council decision on what to do with Memorial and McLaren arena’s.

Read more: Infrastructure back on the council agenda

“I’m not here to weigh in whether it is right to keep or not keep Memorial, what I’m here to tell the community is with existing user groups, we all need the facilities to be better and we need all of them to improve,” said Oakes.

For the long-term, Oakes said, there needs to be more than a Band-Aid solution.

“In my opinion, the best situation for the community is four full, functioning facilities to meet the needs of all user groups. What that means is a facility that is easily transferred from ice to dry floor space,” said Oakes.

Okanagan Hockey Group, which books 3,000 of the 9,000 hours of total time in city facilities, said all user groups need to start making plans for whatever decision city council makes. McLaren Arena is already planned to be down from March until the summer of 2017 for renovations.

“Any reduction of ice will be a negative impact to us and to all user groups. We need transparency so we can begin to put transition plans in place. All user groups are willing to sacrifice and adjust while we go through the changes, but we need to know what that looks like and not drag it out for a long period of time,” said Oakes.

On Tuesday, council endorsed the recommendation to involve the community and appoint an Arena Task Force consisting of six members from the user groups and seven members from the public.

Members of the public are welcome to apply from now until Dec. 6 at ShapeYourCityPenticton.ca or by leaving an application at city hall.

Appointments will be announced at the first city council meeting in 2017 with a timeline to complete their mandate of recommendations prior to June 30, 2017.

The 66-year-old Memorial Arena is in desperate need of repair or replacement. The cost of repair is estimated to be $13.5 million and replacement to be over $16-million.

Read more: Memorial Arena needs immediate work to keep users safe

Bregje Kozak, manager of facilities, said the glulam arches in Memorial are deteriorating and will have to be re-inspected by Spring 2018.

Just Posted

Penticton Overdose Prevention Society co-founders Desiree Franz, Shane Surowski and Stephanie Lines have created the city’s first unsanctioned public overdose prevention site using an old wine-tour bus. The site began operations in June 2021. (Desiree Franz/Facebook)
Volunteers launch Penticton’s first public supervised injection site

2021 is on pace to be the deadliest year for overdoses in Penticton on record

Four golfers from Fairview Mountain Golf Club in Oliver will golf from sunrise to sunset to raise funds for ALS on June 29. (Submitted)
Golfing from sunrise to sunset in Oliver for ALS

Four golfers from Fairview Mountain Golf Club have taken up the challenge June 29

Jann Arden will embark on Canada-wide tour Spring 2022 with a stop in Penticton at the South Okanagan Events Centre on June 13. (Contributed)
Jann Arden coming to Penticton in 2022

The Jann Arden Live! tour has been rescheduled for 2022

A storm watch has been issued for the Okanagan, Kootenays and Columbia regions of B.C. (Calvin Dickson photo)
Another severe thunderstorm watch issued for the Okanagan

Conditions are favourable for thunderstorms that may produce strong wind gusts, hail and heavy rain

The South Okanagan Tim Hortons raised over $4,000 through the three day orange doughnut promotion with 100 per cent of proceeds going to to the Residential School Survivors Society. The owner of these locations matched the amount. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
South Okanagan Tim Hortons raises over $8K for residential school survivors

More than $4,000 worth of doughnuts were purchased over three days

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden is pictured with a draft horse. (Canadian Horse Defence Coalition)
Jann Arden backs petition to stop live horse export

June 14 is the International Day to End Live Export of Animals

(Dave Ogilvie photo)
One injured after being pinned by fallen forklift near Peachland

West Kelowna emergency crews responded to reports of a person stuck under a forklift

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

B.C. ambulance station in Revelstoke is expected to get a new system called the Scheduled On-Call (SOC) this fall. (Liam Harrap - Revelstoke Review)
B.C. ambulance changes could put Revelstoke residents at risk, warn local paramedics

Paramedics said to expect a substantial increase in ambulance response time starting this fall

This goose family went for a leisurely stroll down Vernon’s Main Street Saturday, April 25. (Dave Deshane photo)
Controversial Vernon goose cull won’t fly this year

Necessary permit procedures held up at a federal level

Mounties cover a burgundy truck with a tent at Buckerfields in West Kelowna on Monday, June 14. The RCMP is investigating after a woman’s body was found inside the truck. (Amandalina Letterio/Capital News)
West Kelowna RCMP investigating suspicious death after body found in truck

Police responded to a truck parked out front of a Main Street business where the body was found

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

Most Read