Parks News

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Bridge Abutment Repairs along Mission Creek Greenway

Starting Tuesday, August 6th for approximately one month, a section of the Mission Creek Greenway will be closed daily between 7:00 am and 4:00 pm.

Approximately one-kilometre of the recreational trail will be closed from the Friends bridge upstream from the Hollywood Road park entrance to the Smoothing Stones bridge farther upstream including the Cedars bridge.

This means while crews are working daily, visitors will not be able to go upstream past the Friends bridge or from the Field Road entrance downstream past the Smoothing Stones bridge.

The Greenway closure will allow workers and heavy equipment to repair damage to the rip rap protection around each of the three bridges over Mission Creek ahead of the Kokanee salmon spawning season.

The rip rap protecting the bridge abutments was damaged during the spring runoff in 2017 and last year.  Repairs are needed to preserve the life of the bridge structures and for the safety of visitors.

While this area will be closed during normal work hours, the section will be open for use on evenings after 4:00 pm and over the Labour Day long weekend August 31st – September 2nd.  No other areas of the more than 16.5-kilometre trail are affected and remain open for use.

For information on any of the 30 regional parks in the Central Okanagan visit www.regionaldistrict.com/pickapark.

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Story Time in the park

Bring your 3-5 year-olds to for a free drop-in story and activity at Mission Creek Regional Park Tuesdays at 10:30 during July and August.

The stories will be followed by an exploration of nearby areas through a series of mini nature walks.

No registration required. Meet under the trees near the park playground at Springfield and Durnin Roads.

For more information please visit www.regionaldistrict.com/parksevents, drop-in or call the EECO at 250-469-6140.

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Meet Your Wild Neighbours

Enjoy a summer evening in the park and join one of our park interpreters from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm as they introduce you to some of the local wildlife. This free, drop in program does not require registration.

Dates and Location:

For more information please visit www.regionaldistrict.com/parksevents, drop-in or call the EECO at 250-469-6140.

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Geocaching at the EECO

Each Saturday through August join our interactive treasure hunt with ‘Geocaching at the EECO’.  

The whole family can get involved each Saturday morning starting at 10:30. Borrow a GPS for a $5.00 deposit from our EECO staff and search the forest in Mission Creek Regional Park for hidden geocaches!  Please pre-register for this free program.

For more information and to register, please visit regionaldistrict.com/parksevents, drop-in or call the EECO at 250-469-6140.

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Gibson House Tours and 'Art in the park'

Delve into a bit of local history then let your artistic juices flow at Gibson Heritage House in Kopje Regional Park on Carrs Landing Road in Lake Country. 

Until the end of August, Gibson House is open for tours each Sunday from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.  Regional Parks staff and volunteers will guide you through the 1912 heritage house which has been restored and refurnished through community donations. 

And each Sunday from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm through August 18th we’re also celebrating Art in the Park’.  Create your own watercolour masterpieces as we provide all the materials you’ll need in this family-friendly program!

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.

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Trail Sections Closed in Mission creek regional park

Short sections of three trails in Mission Creek Regional Park are closed after a slope slide.

For safety of visitors, Regional Parks staff has closed the area of the park at the Cottonwoods Bridge and three trails on the south side of the creek near the spawning channel up into the Sutherland Hills portion of the park. 

Brad Ackerman, Parks Services Operations Manager says “Until slope stability can be assessed, the Regional District urges park users to respect the barricades and trail closed signs.” 

The affected portion of the trails will remain closed until further notice.

No debris has made its way into either the spawning channel or Mission Creek.

Visitors are encouraged to use any of the open trails within the 92-hectare regional park or visit www.regionaldistrict.com/pickapark for information about our 29 other regional parks.

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More Hours, More Access for Regional parks

Residents will be able to enjoy their regional parks in the Central Okanagan more this year.

That’s one of the benefits of the new Regional Parks Regulation Bylaw which provides additional hours of access and operation for regional parks.  Visitors will enjoy another hour of access each evening during the spring and fall months and two additional hours on summer nights.  Other updates see vaping added to the ban on all smoking within regional parks and a new opportunity to permit First Nations ceremonial, cultural and social purposes.

Communications Officer Bruce Smith says “Regional Parks have become a popular destination for residents and visitors during the summer months. In order to ensure that park visitors continue to experience high quality services and park experiences, some new reservation regulations are in place designed to provide equal opportunities for everyone to enjoy the natural beauty and amenities in our Regional Parks.”

There are now three categories of reservations available:

  • Special Events a new application form ensures that parking and washroom facilities are provided for participants at events for up to 500 people.
  • Weddings permitted at Bertram Creek and Kopje Regional Parks during April, May, September and October for up to 75 guests over a 4-hour period.  With limited parking, wedding bookings are no longer available at Gellatly Nut Farm and Kaloya regional parks.
  • Picnic Shelter reservations are available at many of our Regional Parks for up to 25 guests over a two-hour period.

Along with these changes to Regional Parks reservations is a new table of fees including a new booking fee for school programs.  

Anyone considering a park/facility booking should contact Visitor Services at 250-469-6140 for specific details or visit www.regionaldistrict.com/parkbooking.

The Regional District has 30 Regional Parks and 20 community parks protecting over 2,100 hectares of land across the Central Okanagan.

For more information please visit our website at www.regionaldistrict.com/parks or email parks@cord.bc.ca or call Regional Parks Services at 250-469-6232.

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Regional parks Goes Quietly Green

There’s a new vehicle travelling around Central Okanagan regional parks.  What makes this news is that it is the first electric vehicle in the parks fleet.  Nicknamed ‘Casper’ for its ghost-like quietness don’t be surprised if it suddenly appears while you’re out enjoying nature in our regional parks.  The quietness and no exhaust features of the electric vehicle supports one of the goals of our Regional Parks Mission Statement to protect the environment.  The vehicle’s size was an important reason for purchasing it.  Its 53 inch narrow width means the truck is able to cross all our bridge structures along the Mission Creek Greenway and as well as in many of our other regional parks.

 

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Discovery Backpacks

Grab a backpack filled with equipment to discover the secrets of Mission Creek Regional Park.

For a suggested $2 donation, sign out a Discovery Backpack at the EECO. Choose your adventure from the themes Pond Exploration, Forest Walk, Mini Beasts and Kokanee and explore the park!

Check it out at the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan in Mission Creek Regional Park, Springfield and Durnin Roads.  The EECO is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.

For more information on this and other EECO programs, check out ‘Your Guide to Regional Parks’, visit the Regional District website (regionaldistrict.com/parksevents) or contact the EECO at 250-469-6140.

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Washouts Close Section of the Mission creek Greenway

At least two washout slides have forced the closure of a section of the Mission Creek Greenway.  

The Pinnacle Trail loop past the KLO Creek Bridge, the Black Bear Trail along Mission Creek and the upper Greenway Trail leading to the Hydraulic Creek trail-end are closed until further notice while staff assesses damage, stability and possible repairs that will be required.  View Map

For safety reasons, the Regional District of Central Okanagan urges Greenway users to respect the barricades and trail closed signs posted at the KLO Creek Bridge (downstream from Field Road entrance).

Regional Parks staff is continuing to monitor creek levels along the entire length of the Mission Creek Greenway recreational corridor. With creeks expected to continue rising due to the recent weather and with spring runoff, people are reminded that water levels may rise unexpectedly and they, children and pets should stay safely back from creek banks, which may be slippery or subject to erosion from the spring runoff.

Boaters and those using Okanagan Lake boat launches are advised to watch for floating debris that may enter the lake as a result of the runoff.

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New Regional Park Management Plan

The Regional Board has adopted a Management Plan for Woodhaven Nature Conservancy Regional Park

The 20 year plan will help guide development of the 29.8-hectare Regional Park properties has four unique ecological areas, several species at risk including the Western Screech Owl and the Eco Culture Centre in partnership with the UBC Okanagan Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.  The plan was developed over the past year with extensive input from stakeholders and residents.  It’s designed to respect and protect the cultural, conservation and heritage values of the original 8.7-hectare park with outdoor education opportunities and future recreational connections to the Bellevue Creek Greenway and Canyon Falls Park.  

The management plan is consistent with the proposed 2017 – 2021 Financial Plan and any financial projects will be subject to Regional Board approval.

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There's a Trail for Everyone!

The Regional District is making it easier for people to get out and enjoy trails through our Regional Parks.

Seven of the parks now have designated trails marked with names and rating signs so that visitors can see a degree of difficulty on a particular trail.  There are also trail profiles provided giving a visual snapshot of elevation changes and other features over the length of these designated trails.

Communications Officer Bruce Smith says, “In our Guide to Regional Parks, we’ve always provided a simple rating system for many of our outings in the ‘Take a Hike’ and ‘Explore Your Parks’ programs.   But with a grant from the BC Community Recreation Program dedicated to improving trail signage and the visitor experience in our parks, we’ve been gradually rolling out a uniform trail naming/rating system along with trail profile information.  So a visitor can determine before starting their hike, whether the trail experience will match or perhaps challenge their ability.”

Green circles suggest a very easy/easy outing.  Blue squares provide a more moderate experience, while black diamonds indicate a more difficult or very difficult trail over steep, variable terrain with more obstacles and little maintenance.

Smith adds “Designated trails in Glen Canyon, Kalamoir, Rose Valley, Trepanier Creek Greenway, Johns Family Nature Conservancy, the Mission Creek Greenway and Mission Creek Regional Park all have trail name and rating signage in place.  The ratings are based mainly on slope and distance and provide visitors with a consistency across our park system.  The experience on one trail in one park should be the same with a similarly rated trail in another.”

Trail ratings and profile information is available at information kiosks in these parks as well as for individual park webpages online www.regionaldistrict.com/pickapark.  Smith says, “We’ve created some information pages to help explain our trail rating and profile system.  In addition, all our online park trail maps are GPS-enabled.  That means you can use your smartphone or tablet’s internal global positioning system to enhance your experience and navigate our parks and trails.”

Smith says “We’re also very excited about a unique relationship involving our Regional Parks staff and local First Nations.  Park visitors will notice recognition of the syilx/Okanagan culture with the new trail name signs.  We’ve been collaborating for some time now with cultural services staff at Westbank First Nation and Sncəwips Heritage Museum to develop and translate trail names in both English and the Okanagan nsyilxcǝn language.  We’re also starting to install interpretive panels in these areas to further explain the cultural and historical significance of the name in order to raise awareness and provide some context for this important aspect of life in the Central Okanagan.” 

For many years, the Regional District has promoted barrier-free access to its regional parks encouraging opportunities for everyone to get out and explore regional parks.  With the excellent volunteers of CRIS - the Community Recreational Initiatives Society – the Regional Parks system is open to people of all abilities. Contact CRIS www.adaptiveadventures.ca to join in on any Parks Services program.

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Regional Parks Video

Our parks are great to visit at anytime of year.  Check out this new video that shows why!

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Regional District of Central Okanagan | 1450 KLO Road | Kelowna, BC V1W 3Z4
Ph: 250-763-4918 | Fax: 250-763-0606 | Email: info@cord.bc.ca
Hours: Monday – Friday 8:00 am – 4:00 pm (Closed Holidays)