The Wednesday Sept. 20, 1989 edition of the Kelowna Capital News. Image credit: Carmen Weld

Cap News Throwback Thursday: 1989

After 86 years of service, we wanted to utilize our amazing treasure trove of Kelowna history and share it with you

Over the last 86 years the Kelowna Capital News has served the Central Okanagan – and over the last 86 years it has printed a whole lot of papers. A conservative estimate puts it at around 8,000 editions.

Each Thursday we will present Cap News Throwback Thursday at for a fun little peek into the past, and we will re-visit those editions here in print on Fridays.

Today we present the Kelowna Capital News – Wednesday Sept. 20, 1989 edition.

It was September 1989, the sun was still shining in the Okanagan, taxes were on the minds of local residents and female athletes were breaking down barriers.

The cover of the paper showed local women playing ‘ladies touch football’ at Springvalley School.

“So the quarterback’s name isn’t Jim, Mark or Joe and the defensive linemen don’t resemble appliances,” reads the article by former Cap News reporter Nancy Cronie. “The sport is still football, albeit an altered form of the game.”

She challenges readers who thought that women were too busy ‘exchanging recipes’ or ‘worrying about breaking a nail’ to get ‘down and dirty.’

“These women are sports-minded women, who have taken on the last bastion of men’s sports.”

The article notes that women do not get a chance to participate in football in high school and therefore had made their own league. That piece of the puzzle has not changed. While many schools offer girls soccer, rugby, wrestling etc., they do not yet offer girls’ football.

While we all love to complain about the price of the newest iPhone, it pales in comparison to the cellphones of 1989. B.C. Cellular was selling the Motorola DynaTAC 8000M cellphone in Kelowna. The original DynaTAC 8000X was released in 1983, the first commercially available mobile telephone that could connect to the telephone network without the assistance of a mobile operator and could be carried about by the user. A full charge took roughly 10 hours, and it offered just 30 minutes of talk time.

At this time the phone was only owned by the rich and became a symbol of wealth and futurism. In Sept. 1989 the 8000M phone was priced at $1,149, or more than $2,000 today. The phone also only made calls, it was not today’s tiny computer in the palm of your hand.

On the big screen: In Country, a 1989 American drama film starring Bruce Willis and Emily Lloyd, Willis earned a best supporting actor Golden Globe nomination for his role. A Dry White Season, a drama-historical film starring Donald Sutherland, Marlon Brando and Susan Sarandon, Brando was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. The Big Picture starring Kevin Bacon, the film holds a rare 91 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Fun Fact: While cellphones were pricey, real estate was not. A 2,000-square-foot home in the 400 block of Brighton Road was listed for just $89,900 in 1989. In 2017 dollars that home, using just inflation, would be worth just $156,724. Not surprisingly, it is actually worth much more. That same home is currently appraised by the BC Government at $380,000. Apartments in the Creekside Court development were also up for grabs. In 1989, the two-bedroom units ranged from $53,500 to $59,750 in price. Units for this building are currently for sale in 2017 at a minimum of $250,000.

You can check out our previous throwbacks here: 1936, 1960, 1941, 1985, 1962,1983, 1994, 1971, 1940, 1968, 1992, 1978, 1985, 2003, 1940 , 1977, 1968, 1962, 1967 , 1980 and 1978.

The Capital News is now owned by Black Press Community Media. Founded in 1975, Black Press now publishes more than 170 titles in British Columbia, Alberta, Washington state, Hawaii, Ohio and California.

Do you have an important date or piece of history you hope we can find in our historical editions?! Let us know at



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