Local History

Neil Perry, current owner of Wayside - Interior BC’s largest print and marketing company. Celebrating 100 years (1921-2021) of business in Vernon, B.C. (Contributed)

PHOTOS: A century of service from Wayside in Vernon

The press and printing company, founded by Harold George Bartholomew, turns 100 in 2021

 

The Polson Park windmill and fish pond in 1965. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #18686)

Vernon history in pictures

Popular attraction in Vernon’s gem of a park

 

Back by popular demand for the summer is Spallumcheen’s Historic O’Keefe Ranch’s Yoga With Goats program. (Contributed)

Spallumcheen yoga going to the goats

Furry four-legged creatures take part in one-hour yoga lessons with you at Historic O’Keefe Ranch this summer

 

A guitar-playing cowboy (played here by Gus Hansen) will be among the characters you can run into as the Historic O’Keefe Ranch turns back the clock to commemorate the first Father’s Day in 1910 on the weekend of June 19 and 20. (Yana Crane Photography)

Spallumcheen ranch goes back in time to celebrate dads

Historic O’Keefe Ranch will commemorate first Father’s Day in 1910 June 19 and 20

A guitar-playing cowboy (played here by Gus Hansen) will be among the characters you can run into as the Historic O’Keefe Ranch turns back the clock to commemorate the first Father’s Day in 1910 on the weekend of June 19 and 20. (Yana Crane Photography)
Construction crew poses in the middle of the Vernon Civic Arena construction site in 1937. The arena was the first of its kind in the Okanagan, opening in 1938 and closing exactly 80 years later in 2018 before falling victim to the wrecking ball. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #17158)

Vernon history in pictures

The making of Vernon history in 1937

Construction crew poses in the middle of the Vernon Civic Arena construction site in 1937. The arena was the first of its kind in the Okanagan, opening in 1938 and closing exactly 80 years later in 2018 before falling victim to the wrecking ball. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #17158)
Photo postcard showing the crowd surrounding the stands during the crowning of Vernon’s First May Day Queen 100 years ago in Polson Park. Identified are: Muriel Butchart (maid of honor), Helen Cochrane (May Queen), Margaret Ormsby (princess who crowned the May Queen), and K.C. MacDonald (MLA) who is speaking. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #17424)

Vernon history in pictures

100 years ago, the city elected its first May Queen in Polson Park

Photo postcard showing the crowd surrounding the stands during the crowning of Vernon’s First May Day Queen 100 years ago in Polson Park. Identified are: Muriel Butchart (maid of honor), Helen Cochrane (May Queen), Margaret Ormsby (princess who crowned the May Queen), and K.C. MacDonald (MLA) who is speaking. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #17424)
A grant from the Okanagan Basin Water Board has allowed the historic O’Keefe Ranch in Spallumcheen to construct and complete its rain gardens project. (O’Keefe Ranch photo)

Spallumcheen ranch protects ecosystem with water grant

Historic O’Keefe Ranch receives $20,000 to construct and complete rain gardens project

A grant from the Okanagan Basin Water Board has allowed the historic O’Keefe Ranch in Spallumcheen to construct and complete its rain gardens project. (O’Keefe Ranch photo)
View of the banner announcing the beginning of the War Savings parade in Vernon nearly 80 years ago on May 10, 1941. There were nine such campaigns across Canada during the Second World War to raise funds for the war effort, and together they raised roughly $12 billion. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo 16510)

Vernon History in Pictures

A look at a parade to spark the war effort 80 years ago

View of the banner announcing the beginning of the War Savings parade in Vernon nearly 80 years ago on May 10, 1941. There were nine such campaigns across Canada during the Second World War to raise funds for the war effort, and together they raised roughly $12 billion. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo 16510)
A view of the fields of the Spring Lake celery farm in Armstrong, 1907. Standing in the field are: Mrs. Burnett; E.R. Burnett; Glover Christian Burnett; W.R. Hoath; and Loo Yung. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #3584)

Vernon History in Pictures

Armstrong is known for cheese and asparagus, and a third food once flourished in the fields

A view of the fields of the Spring Lake celery farm in Armstrong, 1907. Standing in the field are: Mrs. Burnett; E.R. Burnett; Glover Christian Burnett; W.R. Hoath; and Loo Yung. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #3584)
Two male employees of the Vernon Daily News newspaper inspect a first run of the paper as it comes off the printing press in 1975. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #8820)

Vernon history in pictures

A look at Vernon’s original newspaper

Two male employees of the Vernon Daily News newspaper inspect a first run of the paper as it comes off the printing press in 1975. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #8820)
Highway 97 being converted to four lanes in April 1990. This photo taken in Lake Country. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives Photo #14025)

HISTORY: How the old Highway 97 in Lake Country got new name

Pelmewash Parkway recognizes the First Nations history in Lake Country

Highway 97 being converted to four lanes in April 1990. This photo taken in Lake Country. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives Photo #14025)
It was 25 years ago Monday – April 5, 1996 – that Vernon’s Gakhal family was gunned down in their Okanagan Avenue home by the estranged husband of one of the daughters. (Morning Star - file photo)

Vernon’s darkest hour reaches 25 years

Monday, April 5, marks 25 years to the day that eight members of a Vernon family were murdered in their Mission Hill home

It was 25 years ago Monday – April 5, 1996 – that Vernon’s Gakhal family was gunned down in their Okanagan Avenue home by the estranged husband of one of the daughters. (Morning Star - file photo)
Does anybody recognize these seven graduates from Vernon’s Olga’s School of Hairdressing in 1958? These ladies are currently unidentified. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo 14320)

Vernon history in pictures

A look at grads from a Vernon hairdressing school

Does anybody recognize these seven graduates from Vernon’s Olga’s School of Hairdressing in 1958? These ladies are currently unidentified. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo 14320)
Vernon’s original McDonald’s Restaurant at the corner of 53rd Avenue and 26th Street. The fast food franchise arrived in the late 1970s. The space is occupied today by Budget Blinds and Summit Financial. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #21674)

Vernon history in pictures

One of the first fast food franchises to land in Vernon

Vernon’s original McDonald’s Restaurant at the corner of 53rd Avenue and 26th Street. The fast food franchise arrived in the late 1970s. The space is occupied today by Budget Blinds and Summit Financial. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #21674)
The earliest known drawing of Woodside Farm in the 1850s. (Contributed - Sooke Region Museum)

Woodside sold: Sooke couple buys Western Canada’s oldest working farm

South Island’s Woodside Farm is the oldest continuously operated farm west of the Great Lakes

The earliest known drawing of Woodside Farm in the 1850s. (Contributed - Sooke Region Museum)
A view of the newly completed village at the Silver Star Mountain Ski Resort in March of 1985. The resort is winding down its 2021 winter season. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #8999)

Vernon history in pictures

A look at the newly completed village at SilverStar Mountain Resort in the mid-1980s

A view of the newly completed village at the Silver Star Mountain Ski Resort in March of 1985. The resort is winding down its 2021 winter season. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #8999)
This view has always been stunning. It’s the southwestern view of the Okanagan Landing and Okanagan Lake, a photo taken on an unknown date. 
(Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #2427)

Vernon history in pictures

A view of a lake and the Landing

This view has always been stunning. It’s the southwestern view of the Okanagan Landing and Okanagan Lake, a photo taken on an unknown date. 
(Greater Vernon Museum and Archives photo #2427)
Swan Lake Nurseryland Fruit Market and Garden Centre, a family-owned and operated facility for more than 60 years, and named 2017 Business of the Year at the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce’s Business Excellence Awards, has been sold. (Facebook photo)

Vernon landmark under new ownership

Swan Lake Nurseryland sold after more than 60 years in same family; will become Swan Lake Market and Garden

Swan Lake Nurseryland Fruit Market and Garden Centre, a family-owned and operated facility for more than 60 years, and named 2017 Business of the Year at the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce’s Business Excellence Awards, has been sold. (Facebook photo)
Noah’s Ark, a onetime fixture at the old Adventureland park in Lake Country, will become a fruit and nut concession on the Okanagan Rail Trail in 2022 after the Gaudet family picked up the former attraction for free from longtime Oyama orchardist Alan Gatzke. (Facebook photo)

Lake Country ark attraction to become rail trail concession

Gatzke Orchards floats Noah’s Ark from Adventureland to Gaudet family for fruit/nut stand in 2022

Noah’s Ark, a onetime fixture at the old Adventureland park in Lake Country, will become a fruit and nut concession on the Okanagan Rail Trail in 2022 after the Gaudet family picked up the former attraction for free from longtime Oyama orchardist Alan Gatzke. (Facebook photo)
The Okanagan Screen Arts Society is set to take over Vernon’s historic Towne Cinema on 30th Avenue June 1 as fundraising for building upgrades is a third of the way to its goal. (Photo contributed)

Historic Vernon cinema rolling into society’s hands

Okanagan Screen Arts Society will take over and run with volunteers the Towne Cinema starting June 1

The Okanagan Screen Arts Society is set to take over Vernon’s historic Towne Cinema on 30th Avenue June 1 as fundraising for building upgrades is a third of the way to its goal. (Photo contributed)