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2012: The year in review

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The Herald looked back at the past 12 months in headlines.

 

 

The following are some of the items which made news in Penticton and the South Okanagan during 2012 as prepared by The Herald's editorial department.

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JANUARY
- The Okanagan Valley was having a milder than expected winter. The odd snowfall notwithstanding, winter was unseasonably mild in the South Okanagan.
- Karra Catherine Idler was born in Penticton Regional Hospital on New Year's Day at 12:24 p.m. to parents Toresa Delain and Damen Idler of Penticton.
- In an unusual case of red tape, Deanna Manning was ordered to stay in Penticton and then be transferred by ambulance to Kelowna to give birth because there was no pediatric services available in Penticton. Ace Carloni was born at 2:45 a.m. at Kelowna General Hospital. Mother and son were fine although the family endured hours of stress.
- Penticton Herald readers voted Rita Chretien, the woman who endured 49 days alone in the Nevada wilderness, as the 2011 Newsmaker of the Year.
- The polar bear swim in Summerland was again a chilling experience on New Year's Day.
- Terri Bremner and Ivan Prefontaine, along with Dale Seaman and Highway 97, performed at the annual President's Day at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch No. 40.
- Boosted by a $44,000 donation by Hans and Linda Kohler of Osoyoos, the South Okanagan Similkameen's Medical Foundation's Tree of Dreams campaign exceeded its goal.
- A dip in 2012 property assessment values in Penticton reflects a continuing tight economy, Mayor Dan Ashton said. Assessments would be taken into consideration during budget talks, the mayor promised.
- The Huffington Post named Penticton as the No. 4 spot in the world to visit. Luang Prabang in Laos was chosen No. 1 based on votes to a Facebook site.
- Visiting Penticton, NDP leadership contender Nathan Cullen was making a pitch for a united front between all political groups.
- With 911 calls now being taken in Kelowna, residents of Kaleden were complaining about garbled calls.
- Penticton City Council opted for a capture and cull program, rather than a hunt, in a bid to solve the area of its deer problem.
- Local Elvis Presley tribute artist Adam Fitzpatrick made a pilgrimage to Graceland, the home of Presley in Memphis, Tennessee.
- Apex Mountain's ski resort celebrated its 50th anniversary.
- A Sprawling 800-hectare parcel of key grassland habitat in the Twin Lakes area was purchased by the Nature Trust of B.C. for $3.4-million, protecting key wildlife habitat as well as bunchgass and wetlands.
- Penticton City Council voted a zero per cent tax increase for 2012.
- Liability concerns kept firefighters from battling a blaze in area outside of Princeton.
- The South Okanagan was awoke by a minor earthquake on Jan. 17 when a 2.8 magnitude quake shook the region originating 25 kilometres south of Penticton. No injury or significant damages were reported.
- Soundstage Productions presented five shows of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Tony Award-winning musical Evita with Ashlie Atkinson in the title role, Lucas Penner as Che and Michael Welsh as Juan Peron.
- There was a constant erosion in the quality of education in B.C. over the past decade under the leadership of the B.C. Liberals, retired teacher and Penticton city councillor Garry Litke said in an interview.
- Charlie and Valerie Albas were passengers aboard the ill-fated Costa Concordia cruise ship which ran aground off the coast of Italy but got off the ship prior to the sinking.
- Hanson, which hit the top of the charts in 1997 with MMMBop, performed at The Cleland Theatre to fewer than 200 fans. Opening for the former teen idols was Carly Rae Jepsen who performed Call Me Maybe, a song which was No. 4 on the Canadian pop charts at the time but still unknown to the rest of the world.
- Retired Mountie and former school bus driver Keith Wiens had his bail revoked for breaking the conditions of his bail which included having his brother from Ontario reside with him at all times in Penticton. Wiens was charged with second degree murder in the shooting death of his common-law wife. He's still awaiting trial.
- Wendy Thomas, the face of Wendy's restaurants, visited the Penticton location for the annual Dream Life Day.
- Judy Poole of the Ironman Race Society said the committee was exploring ways to raise $60,000 for the "promotional fee" required for the World Triathlon Corporation to keep the long-distance race in Penticton.
- Gurkamal Dhaliwal scored 33 points in leaving SOSS Hornets to a 91-85 win over Pen-Hi Lakers in the annual Shoe Game, a valley tradition for 46 years.
- Penticton Herald general manager Andre Martin was named Business Leader of the Year by the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce at its annual awards banquet. Other major winners included Okanagan College as Business of the Year; Andrew Drouin as community booster; and McCoy Trailers as Industrial Business of the Year.
- Penticton Coun. John Vassailaki criticized Penticton Lakeside Resort manager David Prystay saying comments made by the hotelier to the Vancouver media about proposed late-night bar openings in Penticton were having a negative impact on tourism in the area.
- A combined 321,690 pounds was lifted at City Centre Fitness Club has a fund raiser for muscular dystrophy.
- As Canada's one-dollar coin celebrated its 25th anniversary, former Penticton resident Justin Howlett, who made national headlines in 1987 for accidentally swallowing a loonie as a child, recalled his story.

FEBRUARY
- The Grey Cup and member of the Grey Cup champion B.C. Lions visited KVR Middle School as well as Rona Home Hardware.
- Work was shut down on a proposed hockey dormitory building on Eckhardt Avenue W. after developers failed to meet a Feb. 1 deadline to close the land sale with the city. Local contractors immediately came forward claiming the developer owed them money.
- Penticton MLA and Speaker of the House drew criticism in his role as chair of a committee to examine expenses in Victoria. The committee never met. "We could have done things better," Barisoff acknowledged.
- Summerland Secondary School presented the Andrew Lloyd Webber masterpiece Phantom of the Opera.
- Ken McKay, 93, moved into an assisted living care facility with his wife Dusty. The couple was originally placed in separate care facilities but eventually reunited. Dusty died a short-time later but Ken was grateful to be at her side for her last remaining days.
- KISU swim club celebrated its 30th anniversary.
- Neil Simon's Lost In Yonkers had a successful run at The Cannery Stage. Presented by the Many Hats Theatre Co., for the first time in its five-year history the cast included young people. Liam Martin and Aidan Valenti played pivotal roles in the comedy.
- A piece of Penticton's history went up in flames when Slack Alice's Show Pub burned to the ground on the morning of Feb. 5. Fire officials were unable to determine the cause of the fire. Also lost in the fire was Chinese Laundry and Bubblee's Beer and Wine Shop.
- It was announced the Osoyoos Indian Band would land a $200-million B.C. prison. Reserve land north of Oliver was chosen as site for the 720-inmate correctional facility, bringing 240 jobs to the area.
- Okanagan Coquihalla Member of Parliament Dan Albas had his private members bill passed ending Prohibition-area bans on cross-border wine shipments.
- Penticton Vees made history - for the first time - by posting a BCHL record with 30 consecutive wins after a 7-0 victory against the Chilliwack Chiefs in Chilliwack. The previous record of 29 wins had stood for 22 years.
- In an effort to ease the strain of overcrowded courts in Penticton, Attorney General Shirley Bond and Premier Christy Clark announced in Penticton that one additional judge would be hired for the area.
- The census revealed that Penticton's population rose from 31,909 in 2006 to 32,877 in 2011, a three per cent increase although Mayor Dan Ashton said most occurred in a three-year period prior to the recession.
- Choir members from Pen-Hi and Princess Margaret joined Simple Plan on stage at the South Okanagan Events Centre to sing back-up for "This Song Saved My Life."
- After a one-year absence it was announced the Mr. Muscle and Miss Bikini contest would return for the summer.
- Valley First celebrated its 65th anniversary.
- RCMP Const. Mike Leiding jumped into the frigid waters of the Similkameen River and saved the life of one woman whose Honda Accord went out of control on an icy section of Highway 3 nine kilometres east of Princeton. Dave Groff, an Argo Road Maintenance truck driver, who joined in the rescue. The woman's sister did not survive.
- Trustees with School District 67 approved a "case by case" liquor permit to special events held in district schools noting the Pen-Hi 100th anniversary was scheduled for the Victoria Day weekend.
- With an average score of 98.8 per cent, Michelle Cumberland's class at Holy Cross School scored the highest mark in the country to win the 2011-12 Canadian Citizenship Challenge sponsored by the Historica Dominion Institute.
- No one was injured when a trailer jack-knifed near Okanagan Falls on Highway 97 as the result of slippery roads.
- A group of parents filed a breach of contract against Loren Reagan and Michael Elphicke of the Okanagan Elite Hockey Association.
- Chi Yan Lee, a Grade 7 pupil at Holy Cross School in Penticton, won the Okanagan Regional Spelling Bee championships, co-sponsored by The Penticton Herald. Her winning word -- schadenfreude.
- The education community mourned the death of Shirlene Anne Peters who was renowned for her work with those in the gifted program.
- Penticton City Council allowed trucks to continue using Warren Avenue to access Penticton's industrial area even though some residents said there were noise and safety concerns.
- Andrew Miller was handed six months in jail after pleading guilty to sexual assault causing bodily harm in connection with a May 2011 incident.
- KVR Express girls basketball team won the South Okanagan girl's basketball league championship finishing with an undefeated season.
- A Princeton man, 59, was sentenced to 21 months in jail for secretly shooting video of a teenage girl in the shower, among other offenses. Police seized six DVDs as well as a tin full of the girl's underwear.
- The City of Penticton switched its legal services, awarding three-year contracts to Boyle and Company of Penticton and the Victoria firm of Stewart McDannold Stuart.
- Coun. John Vassilaki suggested Front Street merge with the Downtown Penticton Association but Jeanette Beaven of Dragon's Den insisted Front Street was its own "cheerful little neighbourhood."
- Burn lady burn. Disco fever took over The Parking Parrot when the South Okanagan Victims Assistance Society held a 1970s fundraiser.
- Okanagan vintner Harry McWatters and former Member of Parliament Stockwell Day were both named to the B.C. Jobs and Investment Board for the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation.
- Local resident Kevin Proteau was among those staunchly opposed to Smart meters in Penticton, preaching the health risks.
- Less than eight weeks into its contract to run the City's tourism marketing, economic development and visitor information services, the Penticton Business Development Group folded.
-The Penticton Hospital Association was formed saying it should have a say in how the two per cent room tax is administered.
- Protesting proposed back to work legislation to teachers by the provincial government, a crowd of over 200 teachers and supporters held a rally outside Penticton Secondary School.
- Sipping wine in the Okanagan Valley was ranked No. 8 by MSN Travel as one of the 10 top places "to try something new."
- It was announced that Newcap, with its head office in Halifax, purchased Giant FM. "The majority of decisions are made at the radio station level by the people who live and work in the community," Steve Jones, vice-president of programming for Newcap said.
- Benoite Camille Marye, 31, of France, was found dead at Apex Mountain Ski Resort on a path behind a residence across from the Stray Horse Inn.
-Alyssa Kroecker of Pen-Hi finished fifth at the B.C. High School Wrestling championships held at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
- Hilda Bendig of Penticton celebrated her 25th birthday which, legally, was her 100th birthday having been born on Feb. 29.
On hand to wish her well for a Herald photo shoot were Angus Cathro, 18 and Jim Proctor, 23, who were also born on Feb. 29.

MARCH
-- Middle school students performed a flash mob at Cherry Lane Shopping Centre as part of Anti-Bullying Day.
-- Princess Margaret Mustangs won the Okanagan Valley junior boys' basketball championship, the first time for the Mustangs since 1977.
-- Tiffany Shaw of Blue Icing Bakery was among those who pitched a product during Dragons' Den auditions in Kelowna.
-- Public Service of Alliance of Canada members participated in a noon-hour protest along Winnipeg Street as part of National Day of Action.
-- High school students from Penticton marched through the streets of Penticton in support of their teachers, who were involved in a labour dispute with the provincial government.
-- The campaign of MP Dan Albas was linked to RackNine, an Edmonton firm that runs a voice broadcast system for automated telephone solicitations. However, neither losing candidate David Finnis of the NDP nor Liberal John Kidder accused the rookie Tory MP of any wrongdoing.
-- George Kirkham of Penticton celebrated his 100th birthday.
-- Caroline Hild and Rita Chretien were honoured as Women of Courage at the Women Front and Centre fundraising gala.
-- Elvis tribute artist Jeff Bodner was among those participating in a 10-hour musical event at the Okanagan Falls Legion as a fundraiser for the branch.
-- The Penticton Vees set the Canadian and North American junior hockey record with 41 consecutive victories. The BCHL team pounded the Trail Smoke Eaters 10-0 before 3,655 fans at the South Okanagan Events Centre. In recognition of the accomplishment, MP Dan Albas presented Prime Minister Stephen Harper with a Vees jersey.
-- The mother of Adam Williams-Dudoward was sentenced to two years of house arrest for her involvement in the young boy's death in January 2000.
-- Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton encouraged residents to participate in a letter-writing campaign urging the B.C. government to consider an ambulatory-care expansion at Penticton Regional Hospital.
-- The Downtown Penticton Association was mulling the former Greyhound bus garage as a possible venue for a Monday through Friday community market.
-- Municipal workers in Oliver ratified a new four-year arrangement with the town.
-- A flash mob was staged at Penticton Airport to show the community's support for attracting WestJet service.
-- Thomas Mulcair, the front-runner in the NDP leadership race, visited Penticton.
-- Village By the Station opened a sports-themed room for its residents.
-- Penticton champion slam poet Shane Koyczan and Short Story Long performed at The Dream Cafe.
-- Officials with School District 67 and the City of Penticton were to meet with dog poop at the top of their agenda. Coun. Garry Litke suggested that bylaw enforcement on dog feces be extended to school board properties.
-- Interior Health introduced a new "high acuity response team," which would provide ground transport for acutely ill and injured patients from rural communities within the South Okanagan.
-- B.C. politicians passed Bill 22, which banned further walkouts and forced teachers to resume their normal duties.
-- A methane gas reduction facility for Campbell Mountain could end up costing the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen between $2 million and $5 million.
-- Robert Nicholson, the man responsible for two deaths in the Keremeos area in 1994, was denied early parole.
-- Don Wood, Allen Richardson, Ray Prime and Doug Assay, the Pen-Hi curling team of 1962, reunited 50 years later to celebrate the school's biggest victory.
-- FortisBC proposed a Kingsvale to Oliver pipeline.
-- Layoffs at Penticton City Hall in 2010 cost some senior managers their jobs, but they ended up costing taxpayers over $700,000 in severance, former director of corporate services Jack Kler said.
-- Bev Skinner, Wendy Archer, RoseMarie Fenrich and Betty Raymond of Summerland won the B.C. Masters women's curling championship.
-- Joe Wells, Penticton's fire chief from 1977 to 1986, died at age 85.
-- Election expenses were revealed from the 2011 municipal election. Mayor Dan Ashton spent $14,869; Julius Bloomfield spent $10,057; Katie Robinson spent $2,726; and Vic Powell spent $46.
-- In Summerland, council candidate Peter Waterman was the top spender in the municipal election at $1,670, while Linda Van Alphen spent the most among the school board candidates at $1,547.
-- A new dog park opened in Penticton on the former Penticton BC-SPCA site.
-- Penticton city council approved the sale of bulk water to the West Bench.
-- Economic development officer David Arsenault found himself out of a job when the City of Penticton took over that service.

APRIL
-- Penticton's Street Survival Guide earned the Downtown Penticton Association a Best in the West Award from the Business Improvement Associations of B.C. and Alberta.
-- Hannah Bloomfield, a Grade 6 pupil at KVR Middle School, donated her hair to the Wigs for Kids program at B.C. Children's Hospital.
-- Malibu Knights, a three-piece band from Kelowna, won the Rock the Peach Battle of the Bands, beating The Flu, based in Kelowna, and hometown favourites The Daybeats.
-- John Egglestone celebrated his 100th birthday.
-- A 15-year-old girl with Down syndrome was reported missing, but was later found by Penticton Search and Rescue sitting by a creek bed near the Ridgedale canyon area.
-- Amanda Lewis was chosen as the final community medal bearer when Rick Hansen's 25th Anniversary Relay arrived in Penticton.
-- Penticton Yacht and Tennis Club commodore Vince Rabbitte said the club is considering walking away from its aging clubhouse due to high operating expenses and building upkeep.
-- The Penticton Indian band announced a 223-hectare development featuring an 18-hole golf course, winery, vineyards and residential development all on band land.
-- The Penticton Vees completed a four-game sweep of Powell River, including a 3-2 win in Game 4, to capture the Fred Page Cup as B.C. Hockey League champions.
-- A standing-room-only crowd attended a memorial service for Albert Chretien at Penticton's Bethel Pentecostal Church.
-- An air cadet pilot was shaken but not seriously injured when a teenage girl crash-landed a glider plane in an Oliver orchard.
-- Twenty-seven breweries participated in the 17th annual Okanagan Fest of Ale, which attracted over 5,000 beer lovers.
-- Ken Fujino ended his four-year tenure as director of the South Okanagan Rehabilitation Centre for Owls.
-- Penticton city council applied pressure to owners of a home at 287 Bassett St. that had been boarded up since it was damaged by fire more than five years ago.
--Worn tires and wet pavement likely contributed to a fatal crash on Highway 97 north of Summerland in June 2011, the coroner's report revealed. The three-vehicle accident involved a busload of students from Princess Margaret Secondary School.
-- The Community Foundation of the South Okanagan passed the $1-million mark.
-- Yasmin John-Thorpe, Janet Shaw and Lane Merrifield all received Okanagan College's highest recognition award.
-- Frank Toews, 98, and Bea Webb, 96, were honoured at the Rotary Club's annual Pioneers Reception.
-- Summerland residents turned out for the sixth annual Earth Day event to plant trees along the riparian strip.
-- Alyssa Kroeker won a silver medal in her weight class at the Canadian Wrestling Championships in Fredericton.
-- Miss Penticton Jolene Hayter organized Hero Day to raise money for the B.C. Professional Fire Fighters' Burn Fund.
-- Heather Buzzell, who spent three years in Grand Forks, was hired as the new chief librarian at the Penticton Public Library, replacing Larry Little.
-- Four popular radio announcers were let go by Newcap Radio, which purchased the former Giant FM.
-- Frank Tamok of Olalla, the man responsible for a string of car crashes on the Channel Parkway in July 2011, was found guilty of criminal negligence causing death, criminal negligence causing bodily harm and failure to stop at the scene of an accident.
-- An evacuation order for residents in the area west of Chute Lake due to the threat of a flash flood was lifted.
-- The Penticton Vees won the Doyle Cup, emblematic of junior A hockey supremacy, beating the Brooks Bandits 6-2 in the fifth and clinching game of the best-of-seven series.

MAY
- Sunnybrook Retirement Home in Oliver had fire damage to the south side of the 14-unit building but thanks in part to local resident Steve Bicknell, who first saw the flames, nobody was hurt.
- The arts community mourned the death of Penticton Tune-Agers founder Helene Scott.
- After he opted not to file election expenses, unsuccessful council candidate Jason Cox was ruled ineligible in the next municipal election.
- Mary Gougeon celebrated her 100th birthday.
- After a preliminary hearing, Kyle Louie of Osoyoos was ordered to stand trial for the alleged stabbing death of his younger brother.
- For the first time since the South Okanagan Events Centre was opened in 2008, all facilities operated by Global Spectrum, which includes the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre, were utilized for a huge RV show.
- Local country and pop musicians performed at a tribute for former Giant FM announcers Dennis Walker, Scott Robinson, Stu Cross and Kevin Berar at the Elk's Lodge.
- Norman and Donna Lynch received a Queen's Diamond Jubilee Award.
- A year after it was renovated, a $200,000 upgrade was required for an old section of the roof at the Penticton Community Centre.
- Compensation cheques from the provincial government were sent to all but two of the victims of the Testalinden Dam mudslide of 2010.
- Rock the Peach organizers held an open house for neighbours and those with concerns over the inaugural rock festival.
- The focus of the 2012 Meadowlark Festival was nature.
- Nicole Cavendish performed a dress rehearsal of her signature role, Shirley Valentine, at the Royal Canadian Legion and more than $1,200 was raised for Veterans Park.
- B.B. King performed at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
- In Humboldt, Sask., Penticton Vees beat Woodstock Slammers from New Brunswick 4-3 in the
single-game championship of the RBC Cup, emblematic of Junior A hockey supremacy in Canada.
- The Keremeos Elks Rodeo returned on the Victoria Day
weekend.
- A fire at a Summerland RV park destroyed two trailers, damaged two others but all residents were
unharmed.
- Three were killed when a float plane slammed into the forest just off the Okanagan Connector, near Peachland. Chris Koebel of Penticton witnessed the deadly crash and was one of the first on site.
- Okanagan Skaha School District 67 trustees opted not to replace the position of Family Life teacher during its 2012/13 budgeting process. The teacher was retiring and trustees opted not to replace her, instead leaving it up to classroom teachers.
- The Friendship Centre relocated to 146 Ellis St., the former location of Dave's Second Hand Shop where a brutal assault occurred in 2011.
- Mayors from 38 communities across B.C. met at the Penticton Lakeside Resort.
- Naramata Choir held its 50thanniversary concert with several founding members participating.
- Due to labour uncertainty with the NHL, the annual Young Stars tournament hosted by the Vancouver Canucks and held at the South Okanagan Events Centre was put on ice for at least one year.
- Summerland teacher Trevor Knowlton created a new website, Stop A Bully, to combat the problem of teens being bullied.
-- Pen-Hi celebrated its 100th anniversary, and among the highlights was a surprise appearance by former student Mike Reno, who was joined on stage for a four-song set by his Loverboy bandmates, Mike Reno and Matt Frenette.
-- B.C. Yukon Command sacked the entire executive of the Royal Canadian Legion branch No. 40 for not properly following procedure. Command did acknowledge there was no criminal or illegal activity. Trustees from nearby branches were put in charge of the branch.
-- A dinosaur petting zoo was among the highlights at the annual Rotary Okanagan International Children's Festival.
-- Former Penticton city councillor Mike Pearce was among those participating in an early morning deer count, during which 20 deer were spotted.
-- A five-year deal called for the Hospitality Association to have complete control over the two per cent hotel tax.
-- Peach City Radio, looking to expand on its profile in the community, broadcast during the May holiday weekend.
-- James Cooper was re-elected president of the SS Sicamous Restoration Society.
-- Summerland council extended its contract with RCMP.

JUNE
-- Penticton had a record amount of rainfall for the month of June -- 97.1 millimetres. That broke a record dating back to 1913.
-- Saige Carlson and Emily Allin, both taught by vocal coach Lynne Leydier, won gold at the provincial music festival championships.
-- Former premier Ujjal Dosanjh was the keynote speaker at the opening of the B.C. Association for Community Living conference.
-- Summerland council approved rental fee increases for services offered by parks and recreation.
-- Pen-Hi's senior girl's rugby team finished sixth overall at the B.C. high school AAA rugby championships.
-- West Bench residents voted 326-62 (84 per cent) in favour of a $8.7-million bulk water purchase deal with the City of Penticton and infrastructure upgrade.
-- A 20-year-old was dragged from a car and dropped on a lawn at 900 Fairview Rd. before the car sped off. The man had overdosed on drugs, but was eventually treated in hospital and released.
-- A wind-whipped grass and brush fire broke out along the hillside above the Keremeos bypass road. An air tanker and helicopter were called to help the Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department.
-- Census statistics revealed 25.8 per cent of Penticton's population is over the age of 65.
-- An alternative transportation scavenger hunt was held to promote using public transit in Penticton.
-- A new organization was introduced in the South Okanagan. Giving Others a Boost would benefit not-for-profit organizations as well as local businesses.
-- Thousands lined the streets of Summerland for the annual Action Festival Parade.
-- Luke Way of Kelowna won the Oliver Half-Ironman. Scott Tremblay of Kaleden was the top local, finishing fourth overall in 4:22.58.
-- Penticton city council called for an operational review of the Penticton Fire Department, which would cost $50,000. Deputy Chief Dave Spalding said the main hall is still functional.
-- A total of 35 patio umbrellas painted by various artists were displayed at area wineries and later auctioned off as a fundraiser for future art projects in the community.
-- Parents were being warned about the annual unsanctioned Penticton grad Sunset Party in the Carmi Road area, while students were being asked by school officials not to attend.
-- Local police and firefighters were among those on hand to help at Camp Day for Kids, held annually at Tim Hortons.
-- The Okanagan Similkameen Regional Hospital District board called on the provincial government to reverse the cuts to emergency services at the Princeton hospital and return its previous 24-hour, seven-day-a-week coverage.
-- Rick and Julia Valenti received a commemorative plaque from the Okanagan Historical Society, recognizing their efforts in the restoration of a home at 127 Ellis St.
-- Former Okanagan-Westside MLA Rick Thorpe was the first inductee onto the Wall of Fame at his alma mater in London, Ont., during the 50th anniversary of Westminster High School.
-- Off-duty Penticton firefighter Curtis Gibbons is being credited for saving a struggling swimmer in Skaha Lake.
-- Blind since birth, Gail Riddall received an unusual birthday gift from her friend Kyle Anderson -- a driving lesson.
-- Summerland's public works superintendent, Dave Hill, officially apologized to families with loved ones buried at the cemetery in Summerland. In a cleanup effort, workers had removed personal items and mementos from the grave markers without proper notification.
-- Trustees with the Okanagan Skaha School District refused to reverse their decision to hire a family life (sex education) teacher even after hearing a passionate plea from a Pen-Hi student and mother.
-- The Osoyoos Indian band was seeking a new location for a halfway house after initial opposition to the proposed location.
-- Summerland council was presented with a 1,500-name petition asking for a marked crosswalk at the south corner of Main Street and Rosedale.
-- Colin Powell of Marketplace IGA in Penticton received his company's H.Y. Louie Retailer of the Year Award for 2012.
-- Victoria's Kevin Carrigan won the 2012 B.C. Men's Mid Amateur Championship at the Summerland Golf and Country Club.
-- Former Penticton mayoral candidate Benny Wolfe pleaded guilty to obtaining sexual services from a person under the age of 18. He's yet to be sentenced. Crown counsel Catherine Crockett said Wolfe's statements remained consistent throughout with authorities, and she was pleased the teenage girl would not have to testify at the preliminary hearing.
-- Cherry Lane Shopping Centre manager Gary Leaman was critical of the City of Penticton for canning its economic development officer without an immediate replacement.
-- John Mellencamp performed at the South Okanagan Events Centre, playing an evening of hits, opening with The Authority Song, closing with Pink Houses.
-- Retired teacher and former Wall of Fame committee member Sharon Lindstrom was asking why Mike Reno of Loverboy, who attended Pen-Hi, has never been included in the district's Wall of Fame.
-- A suitable buyer for Penticton's controversial properties on Eckhardt Avenue West was not found even with three proposals filed.
-- Penticton city council approved a roundup, banding and relocation of Canada geese from city waterfront parks.
-- Employment service centres were opened in Penticton, Keremeos, Princeton and Summerland.
-- Valley First's Feed the Valley food drive surpassed its 2012 target.
-- Mario Kombou, a professional tribute artist from England, was among the contestants at the Penticton Pacific Northwest Elvis Festival.
-- Sporadic rainfall throughout the weekend didn't dampen spirits at the Peach City Beach Cruise, billed as "Western Canada's premier three-day car show."
-- At the conclusion of a preliminary hearing, 26-year-old David Wesley Bobbitt was ordered to stand trial on eight charges, including attempted murder, in connection with a 2011 assault on a 22-year-old woman.
-- A delegation of 26 square dancers from Japan visited the Penticton Squares, which moved to the South Main Drop In Centre when unpredictable weather forced them from Gyro Park.
-- Layoffs were feared at Revenue Canada's offices in Penticton as 14 employees received letters that their positions had been declared surplus.
-- Jamie Wolanski, charged with the second-degree murder of Andrew McAdam at a bush party in 2011, pleaded guilty to an unrelated charge of assaulting a peace officer and obstructing another police officer.
-- With training camp around the corner, the Penticton Vees announced Troy Stetcher would be the new team captain for the upcoming season.
-- Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton said CEO Annette Antoniak's annual pay of $160,664 is a bargain, adding, "We have a terrific individual here who has made substantial, positive change here."
-- The Crossing at Portage Keremeos held a graduation ceremony for young people free from addiction.

JULY
- Boundary Similkameen MLA John Slater and RDOS Area D director Tom Siddon were both soaked as they officially opened a new children's spray park in Okanagan Falls.
- In what was his first visit to Canada, Petr Smolek of the Czech Republic was able to meet his boyhood idol, Penticton's Ivan McClelland, goalie of the 1955 Penticton Vees. Smolek was 10 when he watched the Vees play an exhibition game in Czechoslovakia.
- The holiday weekend was an unhappy time forowners of a home at 1133 Spiller Road in Penticton. The house was totally gutted by fire but fortunately the lone occupant escaped unharmed.
- Poet Amanda Lewis was the keynote speaker at the B.C. Youth Writers Camp held at the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence.
- Cynthia Kereluk, a former Miss Canada and wife of rock legend Paul Rodgers (All Right Now, Can't Get Enough of Your Love), donated a rent-free home for a high-end thrift shop in Summerland which will benefit Critteraid.
- Local DJ Mickhel Patterson beat out nine other Okanagan DJs to open for Avicii, who performed at the South Okanagan Events Centre. A Grammy-nominated artist, Avicii is best known for the top-10 single Levels.
- Brianne Hrynyk, Adra Greig, Zachary Konanz and Ryan Sutcliffe were named the Grade 12 Athletes of the Year at Pen-Hi for the 2011-12 school year.
- The community mourned the death of Bill Barlee, a former MLA and school teacher at Pen-Hi who was also known for hosting the CHBC series Gold Trails and Ghost Towns with Mike Roberts during the 1980s and '90s. He was 79.
- Canadian Federation of Independent Business lauded the City of Penticton for closing the gap between business and residential tax rates.
- Penticton City Council approved a tax break for Regency Retirement Resorts, which will construct a 159-unit seniors complex of the RV park portion of the former waterslide property in the city's south-end.
- Genetically modified apples were considered a rotten idea, a pair of surveys revealed.
- Edward Melvin Ellis, 51, who had been living in Penticton under a shroud of secrecy for more than nine years, was finally arrested by RCMP for sexual assault charges dating back to 1999 in Toronto.
- More than 2,600 riders came to Penticton for the 2nd Annual Valley First Granfondo Axel Merckx Okanagan cycling event.
- Adam Larsson, 37, a champion cyclist from the Okanagan Valley, was killed in an accident while riding along Tuc-el-Nuit Drive. Larson was remembered as a free spirit with a love for life.
- The Stanley Cup came to Memorial Arena where a movie was being shot for the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. On the same day, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development Ida Chong announced $2.2 million in funding for B.C.'s film industry.
- Elks Canada celebrated 100 years in Canada and the Penticton lodge, under the direction of president Bill Kelley, was celebrating.
- Both Summerland Mayor Janice Perrino and Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton expressed displeasure with the possibility of the two municipalities being placed in separate federal electoral ridings.
- Following Penticton's lead, Osoyoos Mayor Stu Wells was calling on FortisBC to offer an opt-out clause on its installation of Smart Meters.
- Colleen Pennington, the newly hired economic development officer for Penticton, said in her first interview that she would build on the "gems" the city already possesses.
- Lucas Penner and Nikita Afonso were the 2012 recipients of the Sharon Amos Legacy Fund for the Arts bursary.
- Dennis Gudmondson, a 61-year-old biker from Fort Saskatchewan, was killed in a motorcycle accident on the North Thompson highway. He was reported missing when he failed to show up at his destination in Keremeos resulting in a manhunt for the missing biker.
- Local triathlete Jeff Symonds won the Peach Classic triathlon for the fourth time in his career.
- Brian Hughes was sworn in as president of the Penticton Downtown Rotary Club for the upcoming year.
- Two peewee lacrosse teams from Penticton -- Game Action Photo Heat and the Penticton Heat peewee Cs -- won provincial championships.
- Sex offender Don Michel Bakker returned to jail when he was unable to secure a place of live. He was originally residing with his parents at a mobile home park in Penticton but strata regulations prevented guests from staying in a residence for a prolonged period of time.
- Sesame Street Live, featuring the show Elmo Makes Music, came to the South Okanagan Events Centre.
- Frank Tamok of Olalla, 73, who caused a wild series of crashes on The Channel Parkway on July 3, 2011, causing the death of a 32-year-old Alberta man, was sentenced to eight years in jail.
- Tracy Carriere of Penticton was sentenced to 30 months in jail for her part in the theft of more than $500,000 worth of property from at least three South Okanagan vacation residences in 2011.
- Dave Smith, founder of the Penticton Eagles, was elected to the North American executive.
- The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen awarded contracts for work on a new pumphouse and water main linking the West Bench to the City of Penticton's water system.
- Wildlife officials killed two coyotes after the animals followed a woman and her 11-year-old daughter while the two were out walking their dogs near Kendall Crescent.
- Summerland Council allowed a sign variance for the Bad Robot computer store in the downtown core.
- Michelle Boehm was hired to organize the City of Penticton's skating programs. The daughter of city manager Annette Antoniak, the hiring was described as being "above board" but drew criticism from the local skating club, which noticed a huge dip in its learn to skate program as the result of the City being in direct competition.
- Linda Pilon and daughter Debbie Vernon, both from Keremeos, pedaled from the Okanagan to Toronto to raise awareness for mitochondrial disease which claimed the life of their son and brother, Scott, in 1985. Called "Scott's Ride", the two also visited his gravesite in Sarnia, Ont.
- Penticton RCMP called on city officials to make sure municipal election candidates are better informed about regulations governing electioneering on voting day after a complaint was lodged against successful candidate Helena Konanz.
- An 82-year-old woman from Hedley was reported missing after she wandered off when her husband was renewing his driver's license. The unnamed woman, who suffered dementia, was returned unharmed.
- Scott Carter, Jim Hughson, Rod Brind'Armour, Bob Hindmarsh and Scott Niedermayer were all inducted into the B.C. Hockey Hall of Fame at the induction ceremony held at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
- Ronnie Dunn, Collective Soul, Sam Roberts Band and Walk of the Earth were among the many acts to perform at the inaugural Rock the Peach at King's Park which was hindered by bad weather on the first night and poor attendance for the remainder of the weekend.
- Search and Rescue along with community volunteers were searching frantically for the whereabouts of a 12-year-old girl who disappeared while swimming after a day of tubing on the Channel Parkway.

AUGUST
- Ida Lynn Marie Holt-Scherer, 12, of 70 Mile House in Cariboo, drowned while swimming with her cousin in Skaha Lake. According to Coroners Services, a sandbar gave way near the mouth of the Okanagan River Channel. Her family thanked the Penticton Indian Band for their incredible support during the horrific ordeal.
- Stephen Stafford of Arkansas won the Ultraman triathlon title.
- An Abbotsford auto enthusiast won the People's Choice at the Rotary Auto Show for a third straight year.
- Nikita Kiceluk of Summerland and Jared Kittlitz of Kelowna won the JCI Penticton Mr. Muscle and Miss Bikini contest at Skaha Beach.
- A fishing trip ended tragically for a 56-year-old Vancouver man who drowned in Peanut Pond in Osoyoos.
- A Penticton man, who cannot be named in order to protect the identity of the victim, was found guilty of all 10 charges he faced in relation to forcing his teenaged stepdaughter to prostitute herself in order to help feed his own drug habit.
- More than 70,000 participated in at least one event at the Penticton Peach Festival which included free entertainment by Lighthouse and 54-40.
- Kelsey Laing was crowned the new Miss Penticton. Ailsa Craig and Shayla Richie were named princesses and Taylor McLiroy Miss Congeniality.
- Fred Armitage, a former town councillor, won a by-election for Mayor of Princeton.
- Michael Burgess, best known for starring on the Toronto stage in Les Miserables, played a free concert at Gyro Park opening with a number from Chess.
- A twin-engine Piper PA-30 Comanche, which took off from Penticton, went down near Peachland killing a 30-year-old man and critically injuring three others.
- Former MLA Jim Hewitt and his daughter Cathy Cunningham were among the winners of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medals.
- Mamma Mia, how can I resist you! The popular ABBA musical came to the South Okanagan Events Centre.
- Genetically modified food opponents Heidi Osterman and Dieter Wittel hit the Penticton Farmers Market with a petition declaring GMO is a threat to organic farming.
- Adam Fitzpatrick landed in the top 15 overall at Ultimate Elvis in Memphis, Tennessee. The Penticton man described it as an unforgettable experience and, as the result, will work even harder with hopes of returning in 2013 and placing higher.
- After 16 years as an area MLA, Speaker of the House Bill Barisoff announced he would not seek re-election.
- Penticton secured the 2013 Wine Bloggers Conference.
- Beamer Wigley, 9, won top honours in the children's (age 6-12) division of the Pacific National Exhibition's Star Showdown, playing guitar and singing Eye of the Tiger. Mariah Gauthier, 11 of Summerland was third overall of over 400 children who submitted videos for consideration.
- Penticton Search and Rescue was called to save a hiker stranded on a ledge near the Summerland Ornamental Gardens.
- Naramata orchardist Rob Van Westen predicted the end of the growers' co-op within two years as literally millions of cherries were rotting on his trees. He blamed U.S. dumping as well as the Okanagan Tree Fruit Co-op, the amalgamation of area packing houses.
- NDP leader Adrian Dix said it's unacceptable that only 25 per cent of the produce served at Interior Health care facilities is locally produced.
- Matthew Russell of Scottsdale, Arizona and Kendra Lee from Denver, Colorado were the fastest man and woman respectively at the 30th and final Subaru Ironman Canada triathlon. It was announced that the City of Penticton has ended its association with Ironman and in 2013 would switch to the Challenge Family of triathlons. Graham Fraser, who owned the rights to the Penticton Ironman, held back tears at the athletes' luncheon as he gave a farewell address.
- New signage provided curve warnings at Vaseux Lake along a dangerous stretch of Highway 97.
- Coun. John Vassilaki attended a rally on Lakeshore Drive listening to citizens concerns about the proposed removal of angle parking and making the popular stretch one-way. Over 200 citizens attended a two-hour rally on a Wednesday evening.
- No charges were laid after accusations surfaced that an employee of SSG Holdings had been taking copper from the Penticton landfill metal recycling area and selling it for a personal profit. RDOS administrator Bill Newell said it was an isolated incident and did not involve any material stockpiled in the recycling area.
- Penticton Herald general manager Andre Martin, who had worked at Penticton's daily newspaper for more than 20 years, had his last day on the job, stepping down in order to pursue his own business endeavours.

SEPTEMBER
-- A canoe journey reliving the travel routes of explorer and fur trader David Thompson wrapped up in Okanagan Falls.
-- Tom Isherwood was reunited with his brother Joe, from Australia at his home in Olalla. The two were separated as children, sent from England to separate countries.
-- Rich Coleman, who hails originally from Penticton, was among the few B.C. cabinet ministers stating he would seek re-election in the May 2013 election.
-- Roger Badour, charged in the shooting death of Gisele Duckham in Princeton, told a Penticton judge that he feared for his life in prison.
-- Penticton City Council maintained Penitcton Transit's existing fleet of 33-seat Nova buses rather than switching at least two vehicles to the 23-seat Vicinity bus despite lower fuel and lease costs.
-- Mayor Janice Perrino attended the Summerland Fall Fair with both her daughter Shannon and granddaughter Brooke, age two-and-a-half. Shannon said she remembers going to the popular fair "every year" as a young person with her parents.
-- A special free gospel concert, which attracted a full house, concluded the 16th Annual Pentastic Jazz Festival.
-- Dog lovers walked from Gyro Park to the S.S. Sicamous for the Paws for Cause people pet walkathon.
-- The 12th Annual Raymond James Penticton Dragon Boat Festival attracted a record 2,700 paddlers for two days of competition on Skaha Lake.
-- You Gotta Eat Here stopped at Burger 55 to shoot a segment which will be shown in the New Year on Food Network Canada.
-- A wildfire in Peachland broke out on Sept. 12. Mayor Keith Fielding later described the fire as "dodging a bullet." Penticton firefighters were rushed to the Trepanier Creek area to assist in battling the blaze.
-- A teenage girl with a learner's permit accidentally drove through the window of the Scotiabank branch on Main Street. Nobody was hurt in the incident.
-- A new sex clinic offering people a range of contraceptives, counselling and other services held a grand opening. Options for Sexual Health is the largest not-for-profit provider of sexual and reproducing services in the country and is located at 740 Carmi Avenue.
-- Queen's Park School hosted its second annual corn roast.
-- Pen-Hi's senior boys volleyball team was among the many participants in Penticton's Terry Fox Run.
-- Alternative routes for motorized traffic along the KVR Trail were being considered for sections of the popular route near Naramata, provincial trails manager John Hawkings said.
-- The RDOS announced sewer service would be coming to Gallagher Lake.
-- Penticton Harlequins won the B.C. provincial men's rugby championship with a 26-10 win over Brit Lions in the final.
-- The arts community mourned the death of Alanna Matthew who died in hospital as the result of injuries from a car accident during the summer while performing in the Penticton Chamber Theatre's version of As You Like It.
-- Unionized workers at ICBC took to the street for a one-day rotating strike.
-- Rental fees over the 10-day period of the Continental Cup of Curling were waived at the South Okanagan Events Centre after a unanimous vote by Penticton City Council.
-- A wildfire about 11 kilometres north of Oliver shut down Highway 97 for several hours on the afternoon of Sept. 18.
-- Pearl Krause celebrated her 100th birthday.
-- The annual Raise A Reader Day, sponsored by The Penticton Herald, raised over $15,900 for promoting literacy in the South Okanagan.
-- Supermodel Monika Schnare visited the South Okanagan Rehabilitation Centre for Owls.
* Ten teams of experienced anglers participated in the inaugural OK Bass Classic at a little known spot in Skaha Lake.
-- Penticton author Anne Barton revealed her newest release, The Devil Laughs, a mystery novel.
-- Among the wineries participating in the Fall Okanagan Wine Festival was the new Bench 1775 from the Naramata Bench.
-- United Way of the South Okanagan Similkameen announced a goal of $300,000 for the forthcoming year.
-- Larry Nelson of Penticton celebrated his 100th birthday.
-- Okanagan fruit growers were optimistic about the upcoming apple harvest.
-- Police said it's impossible to know if Bobby Fowler, the American man blamed for the murder of a teenage girl in northern B.C. in 1974 is the same person responsible for the killing of a woman whose body was found near Naramata that same year.
-- Penticton Vees raised their RBC Cup national banner to the roof at its BCHL regular season home opener which they won 4-0 over Powell River.

OCTOBER
-- Delhi2Dublin performed on the main stage of the 16th Annual Festival of the Grape in Oliver.
-- Don't tell the large number of music lovers who came to the Shatford Centre that vinyl went out in the 80s. The Okanagan Vinyl Fest, hosted by Peach City Radio, proved to be a huge hit.
-- The Little Do for Ruby Lou, a silent auction and fundraiser, raised more than $7,000 for cystic fibrosis research.
-- Albert Chretien's remains were found in the Nevada wilderness, 18 months after he was last seen alive. In a rare press interview, widow Rita Chretien expressed relief at the discovery of his remains and thanked RCMP, Elko County Sherrifs, other agencies, volunteers and the media for their efforts.
--Ê Hens, yes, roosters, no. Penticton City Council was hatching a plan which would allow homeowners to raise hens in residential neighbourhoods
-- ÊLocomotive 3716 celebrated its 100th birthday. The train services the Kettle Valley Steam Railway in Summerland.
-- More than 56 years after the Pen-Mar opened its doors for the first time, Penticton movie lovers were delighted with a new theatre with the official opening of Landmark Cinemas 7 on the old Liquidation World property.
-- Connie Denesiuk and Jason Cox, representing the Chamber of Commerce in Summerland and Penticton respectively, told a forum that the two communities have enjoyed a tremendous partnership with one another for years and therefore should remain in the same federal electoral riding.
-- Ivan McLelland, the goalie of the 1955 Penticton Vees hockey team, finally penned his tell-all autobiography, Gold Mine to Gold Medal.
-- A $5-million expansion was announced for HNZ Toplight at Penticton Regional Airport.
-- Wheelchair basketball in the Okanagan got a huge boost with the donation of 12 chairs by Honda Canada, Creative Mobility Products Inc. and Invacare Canada.
-- The new RCMP detachment in Summerland won a PowerSense Conservation Excellence Award by Fortiss BC for its unique design.
-- Whistler was named the new home of Ironman Canada. It was announced that event would go head-to-head with Challenge Penticton.
-- Members of Vancouver's Goh Ballet performed at the Cleland Theatre to officially launch the 2012/13 Children's Showcase series.
-- The inaugural Drive-Thru Breakfast for the United Way was held at the Penticton Lakeside Resort.
-- Minister of Community, sport and cultural development Bill Bennett opened a $173,000 upgrade of the KVR Trail, stating he hopes there would be peace on it between pedestrians, cyclists and motorized vehicles.
-- Grade 6 girls from Penticton were schooled on cyberbullying at the Power of Being A Girl conference which, coincidentally, days following the suicide of Amanda Todd in Port Coquitlam.
-- Teagan Adams, 10, of Osoyoos was a contestant on the CBC realty show Dragon's Den.
-- "Born in B.C. Raised on the Okanagan", was a new innovative program being launched.
-- When a show of hands was called on at a forum on proposed upgrades to the Lake Okanagan walkway, the majority of those in attendance at the Peticton Trade and Convention Centre were in favour of minimal upgrades.
-- The Private Investigators Association of B.C. held its annual conference in Penticton.
-- Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton secured the B.C. Liberal nomination in Penticton for the May 2013 provincial election beating out three other challengers Ñ former school board chair Connie Denesiuk (who finished second, losing to Ashton on a third ballot), Summerland Mayor Janice Perrino and local businessman Mark Ziebarth. Ashton was nominated by long-time party member Neil Jamieson.
-- Robert Mason, a 53-year-old mountain biker, died in a tragic biking accident above the Naramata Bench. It was the second trail riding death in less than two months.
-- Anna Olson of Food Network Canada visited Osoyoos Home Hardware.
-- Summerland Mayor Janice Perrino indicated concerns about cuts in Greyhound bus service to the area.
-- Opponents of the Northern Gateway Pipeline picketed MLA Bill Barisoff's office.
-- Billy Pigeon for President, a new book by local author David Smith, was released. It describes an American teenager's desire to run for president against Barack Obama.
-- After it burned to the ground in the early morning hours of June 17, 2011, White Spot Restaurant reopened on site.
-- In spite of a slow start to 2012, vendors with the Penticton Farmers Market said this year was better than 2011.
-- Evelyn Blaine, a great-grandmother from Penticton, scratched one thing off her bucket list when she participated in ballroom dancing sessions with an unlikely partner Ñ her 22-year-old grandson Shane.
-- CHBC weatherman Mike Roberts interviewed Judy Sentes of the OSNS for what would be her final time as executive director of the society at the 33rd Annual Share A Simle Telethon.
-- Bavarian food and beer lovers ranging in age from 19 to 95 participated at the 2nd Annual Penticton Oktoberfest celebrations at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre.
-- The Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce returned its offices to the visitor centre after moving for a brief period.
-- Jon Kruger was re-elected as Penticton Indian Band chief by a landslide. He finished first of six candidates with 143 votes (48 per cent). Joe Johnson was second with 84 votes.
-- Area Shriners showed their gratitude to Pen-Hi film and television classes for their award-winning work on a video about the work of Shriners in the community.
-- Former Penticton mayor Dorothy Tinning believes the old promenade deserves a place in the lakefront upgrades on Okanagan Lake.
-- The TEDx seminar held at the Penticton Lakeside Resort was again a huge success.
-- Musicians from as far away as Salmon Arm came to the Elk's Lodge to jam for one final time with Eric Wood, a long-time member of the Cactus Jazz Band.
-- Erik and Lisa Laflamme of Penticton share a love of Halloween so much, they were married on Oct. 31. The Laflammes decorated their home at 796 Eckhardt Ave. E. with amazing Halloween decorations.

NOVEMBER
-- The Oliver theatre received comfy new seats from the Denman Cinema, located in Vancouver's West End.
-- A Penticton teacher was given a two-week suspension by the Ministry of Education's Teachre Regulation Branch for a remark made to a gay student and for allowing students to visit a convenience store during instructional time.
-- Keith Wiens, accused of the second degree murder of his common-law wife, is to stand trial on May 27 in Kelowna Superior Court.
-- The 56 slain Whistler sled dogs were finally given a proper burial place at the BC-SPCA pet cemetery in Penticton.
-- Olalla resident Sandy Diaz-Hart was helping Mexican women get on the road to self sufficiency through her volunteer efforts which included setting up a booth at the 9th Annual Global Village Fair.
--While most Canadians where cheering that U.S. President Barack Obama was re-elected, in an interview with The Herald, Coun. Helena Konanz,who was born in California, believed Obama's re-election would inevitably be bad for Canadians.
-- Laura Carleton was named manager of race operations for Challenge Penticton.
-- Family band The Stuchberys opened for Hank Williams Sr. tribute artist Patrick Ryley at a St. Saviour's Anglican Church fundraiser. Their set included everything from Robert Plant to Bob Dylan.
-- MP Dan Albas announced he had moved to West Kelowna after the birth of his fourth child - a daughter.
-- With a set list which included seven songs from Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles Rain performed at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
-- Many Hats ended its 2012 season with Becky's New Car, a comedy starring Rudy Nemechek and Tammy Hansel.
-- Cheline Lacroix, a Grade 11 student at Princess Margaret Secondary School created a literacy project titled Red Shelf Readers.
-- Knights of Pythias Lodge No. 49 celebrated 100 years in Penticton.
-- Greg Allies was found guilty of beating his grandfather.
-- Retiring MLA Bill Barisoff and former MLA Rick Thorpe were both named by independent MLA John van Dongen in a document claiming Premier Christy Clark may have been in a conflict of interest over the privatization of B.C. Rail.
-- Shane Groot, a 2012 graduate of Penticton Christian School, received provincial recognition for a video he produced on Remembrance Day taking a story written by his sister Savannah and turning it into a four-minute video.
-- A full house was on hand for the annual Remembrance Day exercises at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre.
-- Cesar Milan of Dog Whisperer fame performed a show at the South Okanagan Events Centre.
-- Remarkably there were no accidents of any serious consequences when the first snowfall of the year hit Penticton Nov. 11.
-- Hearing aids, jewelry was stolen from a locker at the Penticton Community Centre belonging to two disabled teens from Penticton.
-- In what was described as a "first test case" for the new regional growth strategy for the South Okanagan, a proposed 12-lot subdivision next to Vasseux Lake had cleared its first local government hurdle with RDOS voting 9-4 to essentially disregard the growth strategy as it pertains to a 4.4 hectare parcel.
-- Marijuana advocate Dana Larsen brought his decriminalize pot message to the Okanagan.
-- Summerland Secondary School students Abhishek Lekhi and Ryan Varchol arranged a special day at the school where students would not speak for the entire day in support of children living in Third World countries.
-- Renowned naturalist Richard Canning won the NDP nomination over challenger David Finnis.
-- Princess Margaret's junior boys' volleyball team won the Valley championships finishing the season 42-1 overall.
-- A $130,000 renovation project in Penticton City Hall council chambers encountered some obvious technical glitches. Microphones were not functioning properly at the first meeting but the issue was corrected by the next meeting.
-- Developer Mel Reeves renewed his efforts to develop an access route to a controversial proposed five-lot subdivision at Sickle Point in Kaleden.
-- Walter Huebert was again Penticton's official spokesman for The Lung Association Christmas Seals program.
-- Mario and Buck Salting won the Naramata Citizen of the Year Award.
-- Michael Beauchamp, 42, was ordered to stand trial in June on second-degree murder charges in connection with the beating death of 51-yar-old Terrence Wooley outside Slack Alice's in April 2009.
-- A brouhaha in Osoyoos involved a proposal by the town to cope with a projected excess of treated effluent from its sewage treatment lagoons system.
-- Corey Wolf Swite, 26, pled guilty to the second degree murder of a senior woman receiving life imprisonment with the eligibility of parole after eight years.
-- Osoyoos Mayor Stu Wells said he was seeking a candidate to challenge Dan Ashton for the job of RDOS chair believing he should focus on the upcoming provincial election and on being mayor of Penticton.
-- Michael Burgess of Les Miserables fame said he "can't wait to see" the film adaptation of the smash musical which was opening Dec. 25. Burgess performed at the annual Evergreen Ball.
-- The Lakeside Resort celebrated its 30th year in Penticton.
-- Four challengers announced that should Dan Ashton win the provincial election they would seek the mayor's job: Garry Litke, Julius Bloomfield, Hart Buckendahl and Vic Powell.
-- The Okanagan Youth Symphony performed its Music That Dances concert at Bethel Pentecostal Church.
-- Pinnacles Football Club inked an official partnership agreement with Holland's Excelsior Rottendam Football Club.
-- Summerland Council granted final approval for a Kingdom Hall on Biagioni Avenue
-- Barb Haynes was introduced as the new executive director of Challenge Penticton. She stepped down as executive director of the Downtown Penticton Association and was replaced on an interim basis by Kerri Milton, formerly of the PenMar Cinema Centre.
-- Pen-High Arts Media Entertainment presented Nanny McPhee.
-- Faces of the Nativity A Celebration of Jesus Christ, a collection of beautiful creches from around the world was again on display at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
-- The grand opening was held of The Hub at Queen's Park School which will serve as a one-stop shop in assisting famiilies to access the various services available in the community.

DECEMBER
-- Alfredo Bonaldi, a 91-year-old resident of Summerland Seniors Village was left unattended for three days. He died a week later. The lack of care drew national headlines and authorities have been sent in to investigate.
-- Ronald Teneycke was acquitted of sexual assault. "I spent 15 months in jail for something I didn't do. How would you feel?," Teneycke asked reporters on the courthouse steps following the judge's verdict.
-- In a visit to Penticton, NDP leader Adrian Dix said "more than just environmentalists" will be voting for Dick Cannings noting he had no interest in entering into negotiations with the Green party about which ridings certain candidates should run.
-- Global Spectrum which operates the South Okanagan Events Centre, Memorial Arena and Penticton Trade and Convention Centre projected a $1.38-million shortfall.
-- Over 50 entries were involved in the 75-minute Royal LePage Locations West Realty Santa Claus Parade in Penticton's downtown.
-- Students at Princess Margaret Secondary School presented a talent show to help raise funds for the construction of a library in Tanzania.
-- Penticton Academy of Music presented the inaugural Sing A Long Messiah at St. Saviour's Anglican Church.
-- The Walk to Bethlehem proved to be another hit.
-- Three scenarios on hydro rates were presented to Penticton City Council once which would involve a seven per cent rate increase.
-- Kirpal Boparal grudgingly quit as president of the B.C. Fruit Growers Association.
-- Demolition took place on the old Giant FM building on Nanaimo Avenue W.
-- Dan Ashton was re-elected chair of the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen defeating challenge Ron Hovanes of Oliver.
-- Maternity care nurse Meggie Ross won the 2012 Phyllis M. Baird Memorial Award by the Public Heatl Association of B.C. for her work on behalf of breastfeeding in the South Okanagan.
-- Although numbers were down from the previous year, well over 1,000 gifts were donated at the annual Toys for Tots for Teens charity event hosted by the Penticton Lakeside Resort.
-- Ginny Manning returned to the chair's job of Okanagan Skaha School District 67 by acclamation while Bruce Johnson was elected vice-chair defeating incumbent Linda Van Alphen.
-- Over 1,300 food items were collected by Pen-Hi and Princess Margaret students for its annual 10,000 Tonight campaign.
-- Even though he announced his intention to run for mayor should Dan Ashton be elected MLA, Garry Litke said he will work on behalf of NDP candidate Dick Cannings in the upcoming election. Litke ran for the NDP in 2005.
-- Anne Lu won an award as a top speaker at the Deck the Halls Debating tournament at Pen-Hi.
-- A leaky roof at historic Memorial Arena in Penticton could cost the city up to $2-million to repair and Penticton City Council was debating if it's worth the cost.
-- Summerland Council supported a Bully Free movement.
-- Paul Varga starred in the lead role of It's A Wonderful Life with Jill Barnes playing his wife. Lori Dunn directed.
-- Trina Carroll, a single mother of twin nine-year-olds received the Kinloch Education Award from B.C. Housing.
-- Winston Nguyen celebrated his 12th birthday on 12/12/12.
-- Princeton resident Roger Badour waved his right to a preliminary hearing in relation to the shooting death of a 56-year-old woman inside her Osprey Lake Road home in November 2011.
-- Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid visited Penticton and was told by residents of the need for an expansion at Penticton Regional Hospital.
-- A 34-year-old Oliver man was found guilty of two assault charges relating to a vicious sex assault.
-- Koleton Phipps, Kyle Parker, Kassidy Tod, Mackenzie Schwinghamer and Madison parker were among those trying to win a spot on Canada's national mogul ski team at the Canadian selection event hosted at Apex Mountain.
-- Pen-Hi purchased a breathalyzer machine which could be used randomly at school dances and other extracurricular functions.
-- Musicians united at the Shatford Centre for an eight-hour musical event benefitting local food banks.
-- For a 51st straight year, the Naramata Choir performed its popular Christmas concert.
-- John Ortiz, who always decorated his home for Christmas, died.
-- A local $7-million expansion to its grocery section was confirmed by Wal-Mart.
-- It took only two years for the Oktoberfest Society to repay its $10,000 start-up grant.
-- A jersey day plus a pajama day were among the special events for the final week of classes at Southern Okanagan Secondary School in Oliver.
-- Penticton Council approved a zero per cent tax increase on property taxes but residents will see electricity, garbage and water rates go up in 2013.
--Organizers of the Penticton/Ikeda Sister City exchange are hoping that a large contingent makes the trip to Japan in 2013.
-- Doug Maxwell, former owner of an auto service business, announced his candidacy in the May 2013 provincial election as a representative of the B.C. First party.
-- The world didn't come to an end on Dec. 21 as predicted by the Mayan calendar. It didn't stop Penticton's Art Gallery from having a gala.
-- Whistle Down the Wind, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Jim Steinman and starring Pat Brown, Saige Carlson and Dave Ramey, made its Canadian debut under the direction of Lynne Leydier and Soundstage Productions.
-- Penticton's taxes for the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen will raise 4.5 per cent in 2013.
-- Summerland Council approved a janitorial contract to a Kelowna firm because it was by far the lowest bid. The second-lowest of eight tenders was a Ma and Pa operation out of Summerland, which held the contract since 2005. Coun. Peter Waterman voiced his objection.
--Just in time for Christmas, Kyle Anderson released a solo album, I've Got You Covered, featuring all remakes. It sells at Dragon's Den. Collectively, Anderson's Amazing Rubber Band celebrated its 15th anniversary of entertaining Okanagan audiences. Although Anderson is the lone original member, guitarist Steve Jones has been with him for 13 years.
-- Walter and Agnes Stayanovich were warning fellow retailers to never let your guard down during the busy holiday season after a professional thief stole $800 from their Lanyon Home store.
-- Air Canada announced a fourth flight would depart daily from Penticton Regional Airport. The City of Penticton said it would still pursue WestJet service.
-- An undercover drug bust in Oliver and Penticton yielded seven arrests.
--Telus was unable to provide service to Apex Mountain between Dec. 24-31 due to extreme weather. Repair crews had to be sent in by helicopter. Apex management said the safety of the resort was never compromised in any way.
--The 2012 Be An Angel campaign, which benefits the Okanagan Boys and Girls Clubs and Valley First's Feed the Valley, raised $25,080, falling short of its $30,000 goal.
--Herald readers selected Adam Fitzpatrick, the local Elvis Presley tribute artist who finished in the top 15 in the world, Newsmaker of the Year. The Herald's editorial department chose the Penticton Vees and their remarkable 2011/12 season as the top local story of the year.
-- Penticton residents rang in the new year with an ambitious fireworks show over Okanagan Lake courtesy of the Penticton Lakeside Resort.

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