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Local residents and visitors from around the world come here looking for natural areas, trails, heritage features, beaches and other outdoor experiences. Luckily, we've got all that and more in the Regional Parks of the Central Okanagan.

Regional Parks can be found from Peachland in the south to Lake Country in the north. These parks provide experiences through an environmental education centre, heritage museums, beaches, pristine hiking trails, 2 campgrounds and park programs like nature photography.  There really is something for everyone.

Quick facts about the Regional Parks system:

  • There are 29 Regional Parks with more than 1,100 hectares in the Central Okanagan. ( Pick A Park Map)

  • Regional Parks are generally larger parks with natural areas that demonstrate important landscapes from our region. Link to Wheelchair Accessible Parks listing

  • They provide opportunities for outdoor activities that will attract people from throughout the Central Okanagan.

  • There are free interpretive programs for schools and community groups offered in most Regional Parks.  View the Parks Newsletter for information!

  • Several parks have heritage buildings or artifacts.

 

Popular Parks Information Links:

Living Greener in the Central Okanagan
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Regional Parks Services News:

Shannon Lake Regional Park Closed by Smith Creek Fire

As a result of the Smith Creek Fire and ongoing fire-fighting activity, the Regional District advises that until further notice, Shannon Lake Regional Park will remain closed.

With the progress made in fighting the fire and reduction in the areas affected by Evacuation Orders, Glen Canyon Regional Park and Rose Valley Regional Park are once again open for visitors.

Residents are thanked for their patience and understanding while these two parks were temporarily closed.

Visit www.regionaldistrict.com/pickapark for links to all Regional Parks.

Tour Gibson Heritage House

Delve into a bit of local history at the Gibson Heritage House in Kopje Regional Park on Carrs Landing Road in Lake Country. 

Gibson House is open for tours from noon to 4:00 pm each Saturday and Sunday during July and August.  Regional Parks staff and volunteers will guide you through the 1912 heritage house which has been restored and refurnished through community donations. 

For more information please visit regionaldistrict.com/parks, check out ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’ or contact the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan at 250-469-6140.

Families in Parks

This summer help celebrate the 40th anniversary of our fantastic Central Okanagan regional park system by joining our ‘Families in Parks’ activities.

These outings with our park interpretation staff are designed so that every member of your family can take part!  Please pre-register by either dropping in to the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan, email eeco@cord.bc.ca or phone 250-469-6139.

  • Saturday, July 19th from 10:00 am to 11:30 am take part in a free ‘Canada Parks Day’ celebration in and around the beachfront of Bertram Creek Regional Park, along the south end of Lakeshore Road.  The theme for this year is ‘Go Batty’ in recognition of the winged mammals that live in the park.  We’ll have some ‘Batty’ activities for the family along with refreshments, a BBQ and celebration cupcakes.  
  • Saturday, August 9th from 10:00 am to 11:30 am, bring the whole family and enjoy ‘A Forest Tea Party’ at Trepanier Creek Greenway Regional Park.  It’s located on Trepanier Road, on the south side of the Okanagan Connector – Highway 97-C.  Forests are filled with plants that make delicious teas.  Our interpreter will take you on a guide walk and interpretive tea tasting of local edible plants.
  • Sunday, August 24th from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm, we kick off our annual celebration of the land-locked Sockeye cousin with the ‘Welcome the Kokanee Salmon Festival’ at Hardy Falls Regional Park.  There’s a parking area located on Hardy Street, off Highway 97 along the south end of Peachland. Join our park interpreters to welcome the first Kokanee salmon as they begin their journey from Okanagan Lake swimming upstream in Deep Creek to spawn.  Learn more about this annual spawning phenomenon.

For more information about this or other Regional Park programs please visit the Regional District website regionaldistrict.com/parksevents or contact the EECO at 250-469-6140.

 

Park Fun Zones in Lake Country

Our Regional Parks staff wants to have some fun with you this summer.  That’s why they’re gearing up for the Park Fun Zones program. 

Here’s where you can catch up with them between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm for games and activities in two of our Regional Parks in the District of Lake Country!

For more information please visit regionaldistrict.com/parks, check out ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’ or contact the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan at 250-469-6140.

 

Take A Hike!

You’re invited to take part a series of interpretive hikes in different Central Okanagan Regional Parks.

While there’s no cost to join in the guided ‘Take a Hike’ program, please pre-register at the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan by emailing eeco@cord.bc.ca or call 250-469-6139.   All outings begin at 9:00 am.  Participants are encouraged to wear appropriate clothing, footwear and bring their own water and snack for these two to three hour outings.

  • Saturday, July 12th – take part in ‘A Yoga Hike’ at 9:00 am in Mill Creek Regional Park, located on Spencer Road in Ellison, just off Old Vernon Road.   This two to three hour guided outing combines the strengthening benefits of Yoga along with the cardio benefit of a hike along the Creekside trail and its waterfall.  Along the way, our Regional Parks Interpreter will also point out the unique and interesting features within the park. 

Participants are encouraged to wear appropriate clothing, footwear and bring their own yoga mat and water.

  • Thursday, July 24th– join our Regional parks Interpreter for this moderately-rated ‘Introduction to the High Rim Trail’.  We’ll meet at the trailhead near the intersection of Phillpot Road and Highway 33 in Joe Rich and set out through the forest.  If you’ve never hiked this trail before, then this one’s for you as we’ll point out many features and sights along the way to help familiarize you with the trail.

For more information on our other hikes or any of our Regional Parks programs visit the Regional District website regionaldistrict.com/parksevents or contact the EECO staff at 250-469-6140 or email eeco@cord.bc.ca.

 

Summer Nature Camp Spaces Still Available

Our Summer Nature Camp program is underway and it's not too late to register your child for one of our summer morning sessions.  Registration is underway at the EECO (Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan) in Mission Creek Regional Park

This popular half-day morning summer program for youngsters is underway during July and August with camps for youth aged 5 - 7. There is also a special program for pre-school children age 3 and 4 years running mornings July 2nd to 4th and August 5th through 8th.

The camps use three Regional Parks (Mission CreekGellatly Nut Farm or Bertram Creek) as a backdrop for fun, active indoor and outdoor activities with a focus on environmental education to foster an appreciation for our natural environment. 

For more information on camp locations, dates and registration prices check out ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’, go online to regionaldistrict.com/parksevents or contact Regional Parks Services at 250-469-6232 or the EECO at 250-469-6140.

Summer Story Time in the Park

Mission Creek Regional Park offers a fun and free interactive weekly program for pre-schoolers this summer. 

‘Summer Story Time in the Park’ takes place each Tuesday morning (rain or shine) during July and August for three to five year old children and their caregivers.  Meet at 10:00 am on the lawn near the playground in Mission Creek Regional Park, Springfield and Durnin Roads. 

During the hour, you’ll be treated to nature stories, songs, a mini nature walk and exploration to engage participants.  It’s a fun and active way to learn more about our Regional Parks and the animals of the Okanagan. 

For more information visit the Regional District website regionaldistrict.com/parksevents or contact the EECO staff at 250-469-6140.

Story Time at the Nut Farm

What could be better than a playground, fantastic beach and a nut orchard for the setting of ‘Summer Story Time at the Nut Farm’?

Join Regional Parks staff each Thursday morning at 10:00 during July and August for the Westside edition of this popular program for youngsters age three to five and their caregivers.  Participants will be treated to nature stories, songs, a mini nature walk and engaging exploration. 

Gellatly Nut Farm Regional Park is located at 2375 Whitworth Road, just off Gellatly Road in West Kelowna.  After Story Time, you might want to stick around and tour the working nut orchard or cool off with a refreshing swim in Okanagan Lake.

For more information visit the Regional District website regionaldistrict.com/parksevents or contact the EECO staff at 250-469-6140.

Fuel Modification Project Continues in Rose Valley

The third year of a staged fuel modification project is continuing in a section of Rose Valley Regional Park. 

During the past two years, as crews have been available, the BC Wildfire Management Branch has been working in a portion of the park north of Bowes and Pettman Roads.  Crews are brushing, thinning and removing fire hazard trees and ladder fuels as part of a multi-year fuel modification project on a ten hectare section in the north end of the park above Bear Creek Road.  View Map

While BC Wildfire Management Branch crews are working in this area of Rose Valley Regional Park, visitors should be aware that some trails may be temporarily closed.  For their safety and that of the workers, please stay out of any closed area.

Collected wood debris will be piled for disposal when open burning is allowed next fall and winter, on days when both air quality and venting conditions are favourable.   This work has received approval by West Kelowna Fire Rescue and will be conducted in accordance with Regional District Air Quality and Open Burning regulations.

Prior to any decision to proceed with burning on a particular day, local fire authorities and media will be advised.

For more information visit the Regional District Parks Services webpage regionaldistrict.com/parks, email parks@cord.bc.ca or call 250-469-6232.

New Parks Guide Available

Everything you need to know about activities, events and programs in our Regional Parks is now available in the Summer-Fall edition of ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’.

Communications Officer Bruce Smith says “This is the 40th anniversary of the formation of our Regional Parks system, recognized as one of the best anywhere.  And this fall we’ll also celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan, or EECO.  Over the years, thousands of people have passed through the doors to take in the many special exhibits that have highlighted the significance of our environment, wildlife and natural spaces.”  The guide outlines all the anniversary year celebrations and they’re also listed online at regionaldistrict.com/parksevents.

The handy ‘Year at a Glance’ provides a month by month listing of programs and activities at the EECO located in Mission Creek Regional Park and in many of the Central Okanagan’s 29 other Regional Parks. There’s also a colour map showing Regional Park locations and some of the features and amenities that are available in each.

Smith adds, “With summer fast approaching, parents of youngsters age three to seven may want to check out the dates, times and registration information for this year’s ‘Summer Nature Camp’ program mornings during July and August in Mission Creek, Bertram Creek and Gellatly Nut Farm regional parks.”

The guide also has the details for our special guided ‘Take a Hike’ program and again this year our Community Recreational Initiatives Society or CRIS partners will be holding special Adaptive Adventure walks and hikes in our Regional Parks. 

Smith adds, “We’re continuing with our special ‘Families in Parks’ events that will engage every member of your family and you’re invited to join our ‘Parks Fun Zones in Lake Country’ program with games and activities on Friday’s during July and August.”

The new Regional Parks Guide is available anytime online by visiting regionaldistrict.com/parksguide.  Or you can pick up a copy at the Regional District office (1450 KLO Road), the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan in Mission Creek Regional Park (Springfield and Durnin Roads) and very soon at any local government office, recreation centre or tourist and information offices in the Central Okanagan.

For more information about any Regional Parks programming and our detailed section for Regional Parks, visit regionaldistrict.com/parks.

Parks for All Seasons

Here's a new short video that shows some of our regional parks at every time of year!

Greenway Closed at Lakeshore

From Tuesday, May 20th to approximately November, you won’t be able to use the Mission Creek Greenway Regional Park access at Lakeshore Road.

That area will be completely closed while the City of Kelowna replaces the bridge over Mission Creek as part of the Lakeshore Road upgrade project. 

Signs will be posted at key access points along the Mission Creek Greenway multi-use trail, advising that trail users cannot access the Lakeshore Road trailhead area while the bridge construction is underway.  A turn-around will be in place on the north side of Mission Creek at the Lakeshore Road construction site.

A number of alternate trailhead and parking locations are available during the construction closure.  People can still access the Mission Creek Greenway and parking areas at the Mission Sportsfields, KLO Road, Casorso Road, Mission Creek Regional Park (Springfield and Durnin Roads and at the end of Ziprick Road) and the Hollywood Road south entrance to Scenic Canyon Regional Park.

When the bridge replacement and road project is complete, an underpass will provide safe access to the popular regional Greenway recreational trail. 

For information regarding Mission Creek Greenway Regional Park visit regionaldistrict.com.  For information regarding road closures, project information and potential delays visit kelowna.ca/roadreport

Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park Management Plan

You’re invited to join the Regional District of Central Okanagan as it begins creating a management plan for the Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park.  This Regional Park is over 400 hectares and is located on the doorstep of the Kettle Valley Highlands within the South Slopes of the Regional District of the Central Okanagan.   

Learn about Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park and the Management Plan project.  Stop by to hear about some of the unique opportunities and challenges that planners expect through the process and share your thoughts about what the plan will need to consider.  

Information about the Park Management Plan process for Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park can be found on the Regional District website:

www.regionaldistrict.com/parksmanagementplans

Regional Parks Celebrates 2014! 

There will be plenty of special events and activities this year as 2014 marks two milestones for Regional Parks in the Central Okanagan.

This is the 40th anniversary of the Regional Parks service and 20 years since the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan opened its doors.

Regional District Chair Robert Hobson says, “Our Regional Parks system began back in the fall of 1974 and the following January we acquired Kaloya Regional Park in Lake Country.  This 3.7-hectare waterfront property with beaches and swim areas, playground and covered picnic shelter was our first official Regional Park.  In the years since, we’ve grown and protected over 13 hundred hectares of significant lands, encompassing 29 Regional Parks.   Last year alone, we acquired four additional properties, including the 700 plus hectare donation and creation of the Johns Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park.”

Hobson adds, “Our Regional Board had the foresight to create our Parks Legacy and Acquisition funds several years ago.  As a result, we’ve been able to proactively save significant tracts of land as Regional Parks for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future residents.   These more natural, protected environments are significant features in providing a good quality of life right across the Central Okanagan.   With the ongoing support of the Board, we hope to continue the growth of our regional parks system in the years ahead.” 

2014 also marks the 20th anniversary of the EECO or Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan, a log building located at the entrance to Mission Creek Regional Park, just off Springfield and Durnin Roads.  The facility has hosted dozens of exhibits designed to raise awareness of and appreciation for our Regional Parks and natural environment.  It remains an extremely popular destination.   Last year more than 25,000 people passed through the EECO, taking in its exhibits and participating in numerous parks programs.

Throughout 2014, special anniversary programs and activities will be held to celebrate our Regional Parks and the EECO.   Information will be available by visiting regionaldistrict.com/parks or in the 2014 Summer-Fall edition of ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’. 

For more information visit the Regional District Parks Services webpage regionaldistrict.com/parks, email parks@cord.bc.ca or call 250-469-6232. 

 

 

























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