DeHart: Get your tapas and tequila in one stop

Kelowna hotelier Maxine DeHart takes a look at the local business scene

By Maxine DeHart

Well-known restauranteur Steve Stinson has opened La Lupita Tapas & Mezcal at 1570 Water Street. Tequila is a type of Mezcal, hence the name. The 70 seat inside and 40 seat patio, plus bar restaurant offers inspired small plates casual Mexican dining. Home-made fresh guacamole is prepared table-side in Molcajetes, a stone tool which is the traditional Mexican version of the mortar and paste similar to the South American batan, used for grinding food products. Chef Darren Kashin has inspired a menu of gourmet tacos, including short-rib, salmon, shrimp, and seared tuna.

They offer premium Tequila only found in six states in Mexico. If you do not like Tequila, you probably would like Mezcal, of which they have nine. Mezcal is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from any type of agave plant native in Mexico. They offer a good selection of VQA wines and craft beers. Hayden Byrne is the bar manager. Open 4 to 11 p.m. and midnight on weekends.

The B.C. Fruit Growers’ Association has a new 2018 board of directors. They are Pinder Dhaliwal, president (Oliver) and Peter Simonsen, vice-president (Penticton). Directors are Karmjit Gill (Kelowna), Sukhdev Goraya (Kelowna), David Machial, (Oliver), Sukhdeep Brar (Summerland); Ravinder Bains (Keremeos) and David Dobernigg (Vernon). Outgoing president Fred Steele served growers for four years as president and three as vice-president.

President and CEO of Interior Health Chris Mazurkewich is retiring at the end of October. Chris has spent nearly three decades working to build a strong sustainable health system in B.C.

Under his leadership, Chris has implemented services that make health care more accessible in rural areas, services that support people living with mental illness and meet the needs of our increasingly elder population.

URBA Uptown After Hours is Wednesday, March 7, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Aubin and Associates, Notaries Public in Rutland Plaza on Hwy. 33 – 2nd Floor. $10 per person at the door.

Popular take-out restaurant Made In India at 2 – 1790 K.L.O. Road has opened a second location at 112 – 1677 Commerce Avenue, tucked around the corner in the same center as Helmut’s Sausage facing Highway 97. Unlike their first location, this site is a full-service larger restaurant that has both booth and table seating and also take-out. You can now enjoy your favourite dishes in a comfortable restaurant atmosphere and there is even a large screen TV attached on the wall that is connected to the kitchen so you can see your food being prepared. Owned and operated by India educated chefs, Brijesh Negi and Sheeshpal Singh, they also offer a lunch buffet from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. Some popular menu items are appetizers of samosas, Onion Bhaji and Fish Pakora; rice and several types of Naan bread; Beef and Chicken Curry, Mango Chicken, Lamb Roagan, Laal Maas; Kadhai, Saag Paneer, Bangan Bhart and Yellow Daal Tudka. Sides of Raita, Poppadoms and desserts are available. Call 236-420-1000.

(Made In India Restaurant chef Sheeshpul Singh (left) and chef Brijesh Negi. – Image: Contributed)

Founder and president of Keenfit – The Pole Walking Company, Sheri Simson, a mother of three, not only attracted herself a nomination in the top prize category of Mompreneur Award of Excellence, she is now one of only eight finalists running for this prestigious title that honours exemplary product and service. Winners will be announced in Toronto on March 2nd.

Jo Ann McLellan has started company Local Marketing Plus. She specializes in social media reviews, such as Google, Facebook, Trip Advisor and websites for businesses and reputation management. Businesses are finding it harder these days to recover from poor customer reviews and Jo Ann is able to help them recover quicker when this happens, which is unique for each company. She can also show businesses how easy it is to systematize the process of getting positive online client reviews, which are critical in gaining new business. or call 250-979-8835.

Pita Pit Canada recently announced plans to roll out full-calorie information at all of its Canadian restaurants, more than 200 locations and 19 across B.C. with plans to have this completed by the end of 2018. This brave step will challenge others in the fast casual space in Canada to do the same thing. I think it’s a fabulous idea.

The local Pita Pit, located at 229 Bernard Ave, owned and operated for many years by Pavneet Singh offers a full menu of Pitas with your choice of veggies, sauce, cheeses and seasonings. Pitas are healthy fast food, with more fillings and less bread. Pita Pit uses Canadian Pinty’s chicken with no steroids.

If you are choosey, you can choose your own items and they will make it. You can also try your favourite pita fork style as a salad. Some of the popular pitas are chicken Caesar, philly steak, falafel, garden, spicy black bean, turkey and tuna.

They also offer all day breakfast pitas, fresh fruit and veggie smoothies and offer catering platters. Call 250-979-7482

(Pita Pit owner Pavneet Singh. – Image: Contributed)

The Okanagan Symphony Orchestra (OSO) is hosting a Bucket List Raffle. It is a circumnavigation of Newfoundland with boutique cruise line Adventure Canada.

The total prize package is worth approximately $30,000 and includes two berths in a tier 6 cabin (second highest tier) and flights to St. John’s from any major center in Canada on WestJet Airlines. Tickets are $50 each with only 1,500 tickets being sold. Draw date is May 13/2018 and cruise date is October 2/2018.

Tickets can be purchased at the OSO office at 865 Bernard Avenue, at all concerts or online at

Roger Tilstra is the general manager of Okanagan Symphony Orchestra.

The 2018 Central Okanagan Heritage Society Annual Award winners were announced as part of National Heritage week.

Congratulations to James (Mayor) and Anita Baker, Lake Country (Distinguished Community Servíce); Martin House, 17187 Mountain Avenue, Janice and Mike Henry (Conservation project in a heritage building currently in residential use); Winter House, 815 Bernard Avenue, Leanne Athans (continued conservation of a heritage building); Whitehead House, 545 Burne, Andre and Lynette Zwaan (continued conservation of a heritage building); Kelowna Pioneer Cemetery, City of Kelowna & Partners (Preservation or restoration of a neighbourhood or area) and Applebox Belles: The Women of Lake Country’s Packinghouses Community Stories, Lake Country Museum & Archives (special heritage project).

Singer/songwriter Brent Carmichael is hosting a public event with other talented young artists on March 3 at 1:30 to 5 p.m. at the Innovation Centre. Drop in and listen to the talent.

The COIN Coffee Club in Kelowna has committed to supporting families needing to travel to KGH for care by fundraising for the planned JoeAnna’s House.

They are also challenging other coffee groups in town to donate and together all funds raised will be utilized towards coffee-related items within the house to help make it a home away from home.

For more information call John Christie at 250-859-2557 or Ken Bessason at 250-215-3403.

Simply Art is being hosted by the Kelowna Palette Club on Friday and Saturday, March 16 and 17 at the Laurel Packinghouse. The show will feature over 100 original paintings by 25 accomplished Okanagan artists.

Admission $2 at the door.

There is also a United Way Original Painting Raffle with tickets only $5 with a chance to choose a painting from a selection of original paintings. To purchase raffle tickets visit

Congratulations to the following on school appointments to Vice-Principals (school assignments to be determined). Scott Brown (Teacher), Kelowna Secondary School; Natalie Morin (Teacher), Okanagan Mission Secondary School; Chris Oakes (Teacher), Kelowna Secondary School and Jeremy Sanbrooks (Counsellor), Pearson Road Elementary/South Rutland Elementary Schools.

Gail Prokopchuk is the new Transportation Manager to the Central Okanagan Public Schools.

Start rehearsing that pitch in a mirror. The Dragon’s Den is putting out a call to aspiring entrepreneurs to put together their best elevator pitch and vie for a chance to be featured on the shows 12th season.

Producers will be on the lookout for entrepreneurs in Kelowna on March 8 at the Okanagan College Campus in the Centre for Learning – E Building from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

An amazing array of over 20 documentary films comes to Kelowna March 1 to 4. The World Community Film Festival will open with a special film at the Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society. The remainder of the films will be shown at Okanagan College. or call Mark Haley at 250-860-6108.

Birthdays of the week – Happy 80th Jack Klassen (Mar. 4); Happy 50th Carrie Robbins (Mar. 6); Happy 86th Trudy Ringer (Feb. 25); John Matzigkeit (Feb. 27); Rob Mayne (Feb. 28); Norm Lecavalier (Feb. 28); Ken Laloge (Feb. 28); Brad Sieben (Mar. 1); Karen Harper (Mar. 1); Kiko Carisse (Mar. 1); Faye Wills (Mar. 3); Bruce Murray (Mar. 3); Leon Gaba (Mar. 3); Sandra Hofer (Mar. 5); Linda Frisby (Mar. 5); Penny Ivens-Baker (Mar. 5); Donna Horning (Mar. 6); Gary Embleton (Mar. 6); Randy Leslie (Mar. 6).

Maxine DeHart is a Kelowna City councilor and local hotelier. Phone her at 250-979-4546, 250-862-7662, fax 250-860-3173, E-mail

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