Posts by Daryl Chymko

Startup Weekend is coming to Kelowna March 2-4

The first ever Startup Weekend Okanagan is less than two weeks away!

For those that don’t know about Startup Weekend,  it’s an intense 54 hour event which focuses on building a web or mobile application which could form the basis of a credible business over the course of a weekend. To date more than 450 events have been held around the globe and now it’s Kelowna’s time to shine.

The weekend brings together individuals with different skill sets – marketing maestros, design gurus, business development wizards, legal geniuses, and startup specialists – to work together in teams to build applications and develop a commercial case around them.

Beginning with open-mic pitches on Friday, March 2nd, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their team.  Over the Saturday and Sunday, teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, and building a minimal viable product. On the Sunday evening, the teams will pitch and be judged by a panel of distinguished judges, followed by a prize-giving and wrap-up event.

The aim of the weekend is to bring together the knowledge of local entrepreneurs, and help those in need to find their feet in the world of startups.

Each ticket includes the opportunity to walk away with thousands of dollars in prizes & swag from companies such as Accelerate Okanagan, DropBox, and Github. In addition, attendees will be provided with swag, food, & drink all weekend as well as everything they need to bring their idea to fruition.

Please sign up here if you are interested in getting involved, it’s going to be awesome!

Awesome Hikes – Enderby Cliffs

The Okanagan is full of great day hikes but one of the most spectacular is the Enderby Cliffs hike. The Enderby valley started off as a giant lava bed until glaciers came along 20,000 years ago. Massive glaciers carved out the valley and left a 500m cliff band with a spectacular view for those who make the grunt up to the top.  From the 180 degree viewpoint, one can see as far south as Okanagan Lake and Vernon and as far north as Salmon Arm and Shuwsap Lake.

The hike starts off as a leisurely stroll through dense forest and then quickly starts to head upwards, switching back and forth up the mountain side. It starts to open up as you gain elevation and once you reach the lower cliff bands, the grade decreases and the trail opens up to great views and grassy meadows where wildflowers abound. From here it’s a final jaunt to the rocky precipice that marks the high point. On a sunny day, the cliff top makes a great lunch spot. Be sure to look straight up as well, as  birds frequently ride the updrafts from the cliff-face.

Total hike time is approximately 4-6 hours. Although this hike is good for families, be sure to keep children and pets on a short leash, especially near the upper cliff areas . It’s also not a bad idea to bring along some bug repellent as mosquitoes can be surprisingly persistent on the lower potion of the trail. Upgrades were done to the trail in 2010 to tame some of the steeper areas that previously had ropes strung up the hillside. While the hike is no ‘walk in the park’, we observed a fellow in his 70s walking down from the top on our most recent outing. While people have been making the trek to the top for quite some time, the area has only been a park since 2001.

To reach the trailhead, head north from Vernon until you get to Mable Lake Rd (traffic lights) in Enderby. Head west (right) on Road for 2km until Brash Allen Road. Turn left and head 3km until you reach the parking lot.

You can even make a weekend out of it by adding a day of  floating down the Enderby River, watching a couple of movies at  the Starlight Drive-in and then camping at one of the campgrounds along the river.

More information on this hike can be found at BC Parks

View of the cliffs on the way up

The view from the top. Careful of the drop-off!

Wandering path along the ridge

Wildflowers in June

Open House – Okanagan co+Lab

Are you a freelancer in the technology field looking to surround yourself with other smart people in a shared office environment?

Okanagan co+Lab is holding an open house and is inviting local members of the technology community to learn more about this exciting venture in collaborative work environments. co+Lab is aimed at attracting freelance individuals and startups in the technology field. This includes but is not limited to programmers, designers, project managers, graphic artists, network admins, entrepreneurs. The space is designed to be collective in nature, all members are encouraged to help the space function and grow.

Rates start at $250/month and include desk+chair, internet access, access to boardrooms, and more.

Location: Kelowna Innovation Centre (ORIC) 1405 St. Paul Street
Date: May 26, 2011
Time: 4:30 PM Doors and Mingling – 5:00 PM Presentations
Cost: Free
Snacks and beverages will be provided.
RSVP here: colabopenhouse.eventbrite.com

See okcolab.com for more information on the space.

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New Year’s Eve, random lamp-post on Bernard Ave.