The Cannery Trade Centre is celebrating its 35th anniversary with an open house on March 23 starting at noon.
According to the centre manager, Jill Bateman, attendees can take in live music, participate in a scavenger hunt, win prizes and cap it off with free cupcakes. Her father and his business partner purchased the building in 1984 to convert it into a commercial space, and she stepped in as manager in 2009, so Bateman has had an up-close look at the building’s transformation over the years.
“The property itself has been a part of Penticton for a really long time. When it was still an Aylmer’s Cannery, it played a very important role in the social and commercial life in Penticton,” said Bateman. “My dad, Bob Bateman, and his business partner decided to buy the property and turn it into a commercial mall. It was zoned industrial at the time so it was never meant to be a mall like Cherry Lane, it was meant to be a shared space for smaller manufacturing businesses and other more industrial concerns.”
Bateman said now the building’s zoning has changed, and with that, the types of tenants that occupy its rooms. She said there are still manufacturing and light industrial businesses within the centre as well.
“We have all kinds of different things now, we have food service, a bit of retail, all kinds of things. There are always new ideas coming round and always people who have new ideas for small businesses and they come to us for space,” said Bateman.
“It’s always an eclectic mix.”
One of the long-standing tenants in the building, Wendy Goudie of Get Bent Yoga and Dance Studio, said her business would not exist today if it wasn’t for the support the Cannery Trade Centre has provided her. Get Bent moved into the centre 16 years ago and has been able to move spaces and adapt and grow within the building since then.
“The landlords are – not by their desire to be micromanaging, but because we’re all friends – aware of what’s going on with all the businesses and they really do want to see us succeed,” said Goudie. “It’s a very different environment. It’s wonderful and we’re very happy here.”
Jaimie Miller-Haywood of Haywood Design + Build said although she and her husband’s business has only been in the centre since June 2018, they’ve already experienced great success in building a customer base and networking with other tenants.
“It’s incredible, just being a part of the whole community that the Cannery has. There’s a number of other small businesses that are mom and pop shops and, to be honest, it can be pretty isolating,” said Miller-Haywood. “But you walk down the hallway and there are your old buddies and you can grab a cup of coffee or go for a glass of wine. It’s fantastic.”
Because they offer residential design services, Miller-Haywood said she and her husband appreciated the architecture of the centre when they were looking around for office space.
“We were drawn to the Cannery because of its historical significance. With our background in architecture, historical buildings are important to us, and we love to honour them,” said Miller-Haywood. “So getting in and being a part of it is really fulfilling.”
During the open house, Get Bent Yoga and Dance will be hosting performances out of its studio within the centre and attendees can experience one of Haywood Design + Build’s latest projects through virtual reality within their office space.
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