Westside Daze offers something for everyone

This weekend Westside Daze will offer fun and cause to celebrate the community

Westside Daze is a gargantuan labour of love for the 15 members of its organizing committee.

They work year-round to organize the event and ensure that everyone in the city gets one great party.

“We have so much fun doing this for the city,” said Leah Thordarson president and administrator of Westside Daze.

What makes it such a unique event, she said, is that it’s one of the few completely cost-free family festivals in the Okanagan.

It’s fuelled by volunteerism and local businesses that chip in donations from $250 to $10,000 to allow the community enjoy the celebration.

One of the most notable donations this year came from Mission Hill winery. They kicked in a $10,000 donation to give the July 30 fireworks show an extra pop.

While that may be the showstopper, there’s much more to the weekend, including a parade, a dog agility contest, a number of concerts and all the food and vendors that the event’s 35,000 people have come to love.

“It has a really good flow,” Thordarson said. “This whole thing works the way we have set it up.

One of the contributors to the event is the Westbank Museum, which will have a trailer set up at the event that offers a little insight into the people who have made the region so special.

READ MORE: WESTSIDE DAZE AND WESTBANK FIRST NATION

“It’s the museum’s 40th anniversary so we will be promoting our pioneer families,” said Darci Ritchey, museum co-ordinator.

For example, there’s the Reece family.

“They were famous for Westbank Orchards, the business, which actually was destroyed in 2007 by arson,” said Ritchey.

They are also highlighting the Gormans who are famous for their mill.

“Fun fact about them, they also started with orcharding, but they started out during the worst year ever,” she said. “It was a terrible winter and all their crops were destroyed. So they decided, if they can’t grow apples, then we will make apple boxes.”

The Gellatleys and the Paynters will also be in focus.

While their stories are all varied and colourful, what ties them together is the land they called home, the way they shaped the economy and culture of the region.

“These families all immigrated here from Europe in search of what the Okanagan had to offer,” she said.

“It was hard work but very fruitful.”

Ritchey said that she expects the display to really engage people.

“The Westbank museum focuses a lot on people who used to live but it doesn’t actually focus on the people who live here,” she said.

“And people ask why the streets are named what they are so we wanted to give information.”

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaNewsKat
kmichaels@kelownacapnews.com

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

UBCO looking for great writers as part of annual Okanagan Short Story Contest

Deadline for submissions quickly approaching on Jan. 31

Kelowna curlers book ticket to BC Mixed Doubles Championships

Elsie Everst and Adam Cseke look to advance to national stage

PHOTOS: Photographer Nick Clements captures Lake Country’s beauty

Lake Country was ranked as having the fifth-best weather in Canada by Macleans Magazine in 2019

Kelowna restaurant to hold fundraiser for one-year-old with cancer

The event is scheduled for Jan. 25 and will feature opportunities for cash donations

Climate change event coming to Kelowna next Wednesday

Panel experts will discuss how the Okanagan can adapt to climate change in the years ahead

VIDEO: Bobcat infiltrates Shuswap couple’s coop, feasts on fowl

Police officers credited for attempting to assist with animal’s extraction

HERGOTT: Honesty in the courtroom

Paul Hergott is a personal injury lawyer based in West Kelowna

Local Lizzie: Be kind, always

Lizzie Skelton is a UBC Okanagan student who writes a column for Black Press

Power lines cut as thieves strike Vancouver Island veterinary hospital

‘Thankfully there weren’t any animals or staff in the clinic when this happened’

Summerland Steam earn two weekend wins

Junior B team defeats Osoyoos Coyotes and Kelowna Chiefs

Morning Start: 3D printed steak? No way…

Your morning start for Tuesday, January 21, 2020.

Alberta man dies in vehicle incident on Trans Canada Highway

The collision occurred Jan. 20, closing the highway east of Revelstoke till 1:30 a.m.

Skier dies at Fernie Alpine Resort

It’s the second person to die in a tree well at a ski resort in B.C. in the past week.

Most Read