School celebrating a century

Everyone is invited to a special meeting on April 13, for Pen High’s 100th anniversary, to be held at the Shatford Centre at 760 Main St., Pen High campus. We are hoping to bring together the reunion committees, alumni, teachers and staff to collectively consider how to best celebrate Pen High’s 100th.

In the last year, a tour of the Shatford has been a popular activity for Pen High reunions. Returning alumni and staff have enjoyed seeing the restoration of this historic building where they went to school and they also experience a feeling of pride that the building is being restored for future generations. The Shatford Centre/Okanagan School of the Arts has been working on Pen High’s 100th anniversary, wanting to assist with next year’s festivities. We believe that the Shatford Centre will be an excellent headquarters for Pen High’s 100th to prepare for the 2012 celebrations.

To provide some background, we met with the school district board last year, updating them that we would like to assist with Pen High’s 100th anniversary, which was warmly received. We met with the Penticton Visitor Centre and Meadowlark Festival when thinking of establishing dates, ideally in a shoulder season and a long weekend, so May 18 and 19 were selected as good dates. Meadowlark Festival, which also will be held at that time, is planning to provide tours, workshops and events that will complement the reunion. After discussions with many community organizations, reunion committees and individuals, the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre was reserved to accommodate the 1,000-plus people that are expected to attend. We have also been working with Peter Ord, Jeanne Boyle and Randy Manuel with the Penticton Museum and Archives in regards to exhibits, displays and activities for the reunion. We have met with Lorraine Evans, who among many other accomplishments, has chaired the Penticton Arts Council’s committee that initiated Pen High’s Wall of Fame.

Besides the scholastic programs, Pen High has tremendous music, visual, media, woodworking, drama and culinary arts programs that have been a tradition at the school for many generations. The Okanagan School of the Arts began at Pen High, through efforts of the Penticton Board of Trade, Pen High teachers and art enthusiasts in the 1960s. Many of OSA’s board of directors and instructors for the Okanagan Summer School of the Arts over the years have been teachers from Pen High.

OSA and the Penticton Arts Council will be celebrating their 50th anniversary together on Sept. 23 and 24 at Shatford Centre. We are gathering memorabilia through OSA’s decades and it is clear that Pen High has been an integral part of OSA through the last 50 years.

If you have information or would like to learn more, please contact us at

Jane Shaak, Pen High grad 1968

Shatford Centre/


Okanagan School of the Arts