Just over two years after the campaign began, the community has met the goal of raising $7.8 million to complete the Okanagan Rail Trail.
“Kelowna, Lake Country, OKIB, the North Okanagan, the federal and provincial governments and a community of trail supporters all came together to create this trail legacy which will officially open this fall,” said spokesperson Debbie Clarke in a release.
“From the government agencies to volunteer Trail Ambassadors, the project has been a model of collaboration and enthusiastic support.”
Nearly 5,000 individual donors, 62 business partners, 43 campaign partners, and 45 trail ambassadors made the trail happen, often in very fun and creative ways. From galas to lemonade stands, large and small donations from trail supporters all built towards finishing the trail.
Donors will be recognized on the website, www.okanaganrailtrail.ca, and on signs along the trail to be installed next year. The newly formed Okanagan Rail Trail Committee (comprised of government staff representatives from Coldstream, Vernon, North Okanagan Regional District, Lake Country, OKIB and the City of Kelowna) is now responsible for coordinating further development, management, and communications for the trail corridor.
One final fundraising event will occur this weekend, as the Vernon Silver Star Rotary hosts it’s third annual Rotary Ride supporting the Okanagan Rail Trail.