A piano painted for Festivals Kelowna by local artist Jolene Mackie. (Contributed)

Festivals Kelowna playing it by ear with pop-up pianos

The Pianos in Parks program is tentatively set to roll out in early-July, one month later than usual

While the pandemic has postponed the placing of pop-up pianos that usually appear in city parks around this time of year, the show will go on — just a little later in the summer.

Festivals Kelowna’s popular Pianos in Parks program is tentatively set to begin in early-July, pending approval from city officials. Usually the program begins in early-June.

“We are preparing with the hope that we can implement our programs — even in a modified way —this summer,” said Renata Mills, executive director of Festivals Kelowna.

As far as precautions go, Mills said hand sanitizer or washing stations at the pianos is unlikely.

“The reality of it is … we won’t be putting anything on the pianos that could be taken,” she said. “Having done the program for six years now, it’s funny how things suddenly walk off.

“If we left hand sanitizer I’d take the bet it wouldn’t be there the next day.”

Festivals Kelowna plans to increase cleaning rates of the pianos to ensure the experience is safe and enjoyable, but ultimately the decision lies in the hands of the pianist.

“At the end of the day, people have the choice to play or not play,” Mills said. “If they have concerns about touching a shared surface then they certainly have the ability to decide not to play.”

Mills said if the program is allowed this year, they will be encouraging people to play the pianos with gloves.

“You’ll probably be able to play just fine,” she said.

READ MORE: Pedestrians only: Kelowna mayor wants to expand open spaces for restaurants

READ MORE: We’re lovin’ it: Kelowna settles lengthy legal battle with McDonalds for over $2M

To report a typo, email:


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

Police watchdog investigating Lake Country incident

A man was taken to hospital after the June 3 incident

Community backlash over Black Lives Matter rally in Kelowna

Some members of Kelowna’s black community stated they don’t support Friday’s rally

$30,000 over 30 weeks for local causes

Send us your good stories and you could win money for your favourite cause

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Vernon protesters take Black Lives Matter movement to park

A handful of demonstrators raised fists, signs in solidarity Friday

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Bear strolls into Okangan homeowner’s living room

Conservation officers are searching for the bear, which entered a home in the Foothills area

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

Youth advocacy group pulls out of Vernon Black Lives Matter protest

Earth Strike Vernon pulled its support after concerns raised about Kelowna, Vernon protests

‘I just felt I had to do something’: Vernon Black Lives Matter protest organizer

Young woman organizes peaceful protest to take place next week at Vernon courthouse

Most Read