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Kelowna, BC

Kelowna is a city on Okanagan Lake in the Okanagan Valley, in the southern interior of British Columbia, Canada. Its name derives from an Okanagan language term for "grizzly bear". Kelowna ranks as the 22nd largest metropolitan area in Canada.


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Nearby communities include the district municipality of West Kelowna (also referred to as Westbank, Westside) to the west across Okanagan Lake, Lake Country and Vernon to the north, as well as Peachland to the southwest and, further to the south, Summerland and Penticton.

Kelowna, BC

Sectors and neighbourhoods

Kelowna consists of ten sectors with multiple neighbourhoods within the sector boundaries

  • Central City
  • Glenmore - Clifton - Dilworth
  • McKinley
  • Highway 97 (Airport/University)
  • Rutland
  • Belgo - Black Mountain
  • South Pandosy - KLO
  • Southeast Kelowna
  • Northwest Mission - Crawford
  • Southwest Mission

Central City

Central CityCentral City is the sector near the Harvey Avenue from the Okanagan Lake to Highway 33, comprising city's major business and commercial centres such as Downtown, Capri, Landmark and Midtown.


Downtown is located by the Okanagan Lake. Multiple beaches, parks, restaurants and stores are located near waterfront and Bernard Avenue. Cultural district within downtown is home to art gallerias, museums, sports arena, and several government offices including the city hall and law courts.


The Midtown area bordered by Enterprise Way on the north, and Springfield and Baron Road at the south is the popular shopping destination for the locals. The largest shopping centre in the interior, Orchard Park, is also located in this area. Since most of Midtown area consists of car-oriented big-box stores, Midtown is often being criticized for its plainness designes, urban sprawl, and the decline of pedestrian-oriented Downtown.


The service industry employs the most people in Kelowna, the largest city in the tourist-oriented Okanagan Valley. In summer, boating, golf, hiking and biking are popular, and in winter, both Alpine skiing and Nordic skiing are favourite activities at the nearby Big White and Silver Star ski resorts. Kelowna produces wines that have received international recognition. Vineyards are common around and south of the city where the climate is ideal for the many wineries. Notable vineyards in the area include the Mission Hill Winery (in West Kelowna), specifically for its unique architectural design. At least two major wineries were damaged or destroyed (now rebuilt) in 2003 due to the Okanagan Mountain Park Fire. Kelowna is also the home of Sun-Rype, a popular manufacturer of fruit bars and juices.

Okanagan College and University of British Columbia are the predominant centres for post-secondary education. Over 5000 full-time students attend Okanagan College. In addition to vocational training and adult basic education, the college offers a highly regarded university transfer program. University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus has a student population of over 8000 full-time students, enrolled in diverse undergraduate and graduate programs.

Kelowna is the seat of the Regional District of the Central Okanagan, the third-largest metropolitan area in British Columbia after Vancouver and Victoria, and the largest in the British Columbia Interior. With scenic lake vistas and a dry, mild climate, Kelowna has become one of the fastest growing cities in North America. The appropriate management of such rapid development (and its attendant consequences) is a source of significant debate within the community. Kelowna is the fourth least affordable housing market in Canada, currently maintaining the classification of "Severely Unaffordable". Because of the Okanagan's climate and vineyard-filled scenery, it is often compared to Napa Valley, California.


Some claim to believe that a lake monster named Ogopogo lives in Lake Okanagan. In the past, naysayers have pointed out the similarities between the so-called monster and a beaver, a log and other less monstrous lake denizens. Nevertheless, local tourism makes use of the Ogopogo legend, and a children's park features an imaginative statue of the fictional creature. In January 2011, Kelowna hosted the 2011 International Children's Winter Games and in July 2011 Kelowna's City Park was home to the largest Sport and Music Festival in Western Canada, Center of Gravity. The event drew in 25,000+ attendees and brought an approximate 4-5 million dollars in tourism revenue.

Venues and attractions

  • Prospera Place, a 6,800-seat arena
  • Apple Bowl, a 5,700 seat outdoor stadium
  • SOPA Gallery of Fine Arts
  • Venues and attractionsAlternator Gallery for Contemporary Art
  • Rotary Centre for the Arts, a multidisciplinary visual and performing arts centre, with a 326-seat theatre, artists studios, the Alternator Centre for Contemporary Art, dance and painting studios, atrium and Bistro
  • Kelowna Art Gallery
  • Kelowna Community Theatre, a 869-seat theatre, 236 person capacity lobby, complete backstage amenities and a 1200 square foot rehearsal hall (Black Box Theatre)
  • Kelowna Museum
  • Kelowna Marina on Okanagan Lake
  • Kelowna Hydrofest on Okanagan Lake
  • Center of Gravity Festival in City Park
  • Capital News Centre
  • H2O Adventure and Fitness Centre, largest publicly owned water park in Canada, and features Canada's first FlowRider
  • Kelowna Farmers Market – April to October Outdoors
  • Kasugai Gardens, an outdoor Garden beside City Hall built to celebrate friendship with its sister city; Kasugai, Japan.
  • Over 100 Wineries within a 90 minute drive
  • Kettle Valley Railway (Myra Canyon Trestles)
  • Knox Mountain Hillclimb – One of the world's longest uphill point-to-point car races still running. The event runs May long weekend of each year.
  • Waterfront Park
  • Mission Creek Greenway

Culture and sport

  • Kelowna Rockets – Western Hockey League (Winners of the 2004 Memorial Cup)
  • Okanagan Sun – Canadian Junior Football League (Winners of the 1988 and 2000 Canadian Bowl)
  • Okanagan Challenge – Pacific Coast Soccer League
  • Kelowna Falcons – West Coast Collegiate Baseball League
  • Center of Gravity Festival
  • Kelowna Hydrofest- American Boat Racing Association (Largest professional boat racing series in Canada)
  • Okanagan Coyotes


Public schools Secondary (Grades 10–12 or 8–12):
  • Kelowna Secondary
  • Rutland Senior Secondary
  • Mount Boucherie Senior Secondary
  • Okanagan Mission Secondary
  • "George Elliot Secondary
Public schools Middle (Grades 7–9):
  • KLO Middle
  • Dr. Knox Middle
  • Constable Neil Bruce Middle
  • Rutland Middle
  • Springvalley Middle
  • Glenrosa Middle

Private schools

  • Aberdeen Hall (Pre-school, K-11)
  • Kelowna Christian School (Pre-12)
  • Heritage Christian School (K-12)
  • Vedanta Academy (Pre-12)
  • Okanagan Adventist Academy (K-12)
  • Immaculata Regional High School (8–12)
  • St. Joseph Elementary (K-7)
  • Kelowna Waldorf School (Pre-8)
  • Okanagan Montessori School (Pre-K)
  • Okanagan Montessori (Pre-6)


  • The University of British Columbia
  • Southern Medical Program
  • Okanagan College
  • Sprott Shaw College
  • The Centre for Arts and Technology
Elementary Schools (Grades K-6 or K-7):
  • Central School Programs (K-12)
  • Anne McClymont Primary School (K-2)
  • A S Matheson Elementary School (K-6)
  • Bankhead Elementary School (K-6)
  • Belgo Elementary School (K-6)
  • Black Mountain Elementary School (K-6)
  • Casorso Elementary School (K-6)
  • Sarah Blakey Elementary School (K-6)
  • Ellison Elementary School (K-6)
  • George Pringle Elementary School (K-6)
  • Glenmore Elementary School (K-6)
  • Glenrosa Elementary School (K-6)
  • Helen Gorman Elementary School (K-6)
  • Hudson Road Elementary School (K-6)
  • North Glenmore Elementary School (K-6)
  • Peachland Elementary School (K-6)
  • Pearson Elementary School (K-6)
  • Quigley Elementary School (K-6)
  • Raymer Elementary School (K-6)
  • Rose Valley Elementary School (K-6)
  • Rutland Elementary School (K-6)
  • Shannon Lake Elementary School (K-6)
  • South Kelowna Elementary School (K-6)
  • South Rutland Elementary School (K-6)
  • Springvalley Elementary School (K-6)
  • Watson Road Elementary School (K-6)
  • Chute Lake Elementary School (K-7)
  • Davidson Road Elementary School (K-7)
  • Dorothea Walker Elementary School (K-7)
  • Oyama Traditional School (K-7)
  • Peter Greer Elementary School (K-7)

Information and Images Courtesy of


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