Friday, May 25, 2012

10th Annual Rotary Okanagan International Children's Festival

Yesterday I decided to walk down to Okanagan Lake Park in Penticton to check out the Children's Festival. My first impression was school buses, kids, tents galore and a happening scene.  I wandered around a bit to see what all the excitement was about and was drawn to an open entertainment tent by a sound that was similar to a french horn, but turned out to be an instrument that appeared to have come from the dark ages. I was too late to hear what the entertainer said about it but I did take a short video.

After I got home I did a little bit of research and found out that the entertainer's name was Boris Sichon, originally from the Ukraine. Over a number of years he collected traditional local intruments from many countries. The one he is playing in the video is a Peruvian Vagra Puku and is made from the horns of a type of antelope called the Peru Puku. His website is fascinating and you can both see and hear his collection of unique instruments.

What a fun place for kids this was.  There was no end to hands on activities and workshops including crafts, music and dance. The Penticton Art Gallery sponsored Art in the Park. Here children were given the opportunity to express their artistic side under the guidance of local artist Glenn Clark.

Here some children were playing a fun game of cat and mouse with a colourful parachute.  Not sure of the rules but the mouse is running underneath somewhere.

I came across Jennifer Moorhouse, one of my former teacher colleagues, with her K/1 class.  They were having fun painting a paddle for their very own paddle-ball game.

Jennifer Moorhouse from Naramata Elementary with her K/1 class
 There was one venue where kids could watch a dance demonstration and then learn how to do the dance. 
A young girl was demonstrating belly dancing as I strolled by.

Afterwards she taught the dance to a few eager beavers.

There were plenty of local venders offering a variety of food and drink.

You're not too late to enjoy this fantastic event with your children or grand-children.  There are two more days including today, and Saturday is all access Family Day.  On Saturday evening there is a special Vaudeville show at the Cleland theatre featuring Erth's Dinosaur Petting Zoo, Breakdance with solo cello, High Strung Aerial Act and much more great entertainment.  For more information go to the website of the Okanagan Children's Festival.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Naramata Community Choir - 50th Anniversary Concert

"Singing Through The Years" was a fitting title for the recent Naramata Community Choir concert which celebrated 50 years of music and friendship.

On Sunday, May 20th, 2012, Columbia Hall in Naramata was packed with choir fans, including us and many other faithful alumni.

It all started in 1962, when Carol McGibney posted a sign on a tree that said "Wanted Singers"  The rest is history and the choir of 55 voices is still going strong under the direction of Justin Glibbery who took over the baton, three years ago. 

Craig Henderson was a brilliant Master of Ceremonies as the choir took us on a fabulous muscial journey down memory lane.

Interspersed with the concert were some video reflections including special interviews, historic photos and film. Craig Henderson and Gary MacDougall of Video Innovation Productions worked together to produce these nostalgic clips. Carol McGibney and charter members of the choir shared their memories and Berte and Stu Berry were featured in a 2007 performance of "I Remember it Well" from the motion picture Gigi.
Les and I share a total of 73 years of belonging to this special group and we were both feeling quite teary eyed as we drank in the memories and mouthed the words to the songs.  Ah yes We remember it well!!!!

After the concert, charter members Carol McGibney, Buck Salting, Jake Van Westen, Stu Berry and Berte Berry were presented with special recognition awards by Buck's daughter Cyndie Salting who now sings with the choir. It was her grandfather Don, who suggested to Carol way back when, that she should start a choir, so it was serendipitous that Cyndie should present the awards 50 years later.

Alto Cyndie Salting presents a recognition award to her father Buck Salting

In the short video clip below, violinist Elizabeth Lupton and pianist Sandy Andres accommpany the choir in Ave Maria.

Kudos to the Naramata Community Choir!!!! "Ya Done Good" as Carol always used to say!!!