Posts in Environment

Habitat Summer Shows!

 

 

 

 

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The Okanagan heat ain’t got nothin’ on us… our events are hotter than the sun! Just kidding… it was +36° today. We’re really stoked on these upcoming shows though!

Summer is coming to an end, but we’ve got awesome shows lined up to ease the pain! We’re into day #2 of our Cariboo House Weekend! Last night with The Wooden Sky was so much fun, and it’s only going to get crazier! More music, gogo dancers, aerial performers and MORE!

Next up…

Cariboo House Weekend continues…

*TONIGHT* July 31: Wild Son w/ Deepsounds

August 1: DJ Night with Bob Smoke, DJ Mode and DJ Otis Avery

Next weekend…

August 6: KC Roberts & The Live Revolution w/ the Boom Booms

August 7: Tim Nutt

August 8: Twisted Salsa

August 22: Big Valley Battles 3

Whether you’re looking for amazing live music, sick DJs, an amazing comedy show, spicy Latin dance or a rugged rap battle, The Habitat has got you covered! Check us out at 248 Leon Ave Kelowna, and on Facebook at facebook.com/TheHabitat.

More shows coming soon!

Why You May Not Survive the Mystic Trail at Mabel Lake

If you ever find your way up to Mabel Lake (via Lumby or Enderby) you’ll drive off paved roads into the forest and are likely to find a quiet, out-of-the-way lake with no cell reception. If this sounds like the beginning of every horror movie you’ve ever seen, congratulations you’ve seen through our preamble.

In classic horror cliché, we arrived Saturday with fresh food and cold beer to an already in-progress birthday party. Adventures kept pretty close to the campsite that initial day due to the fact that we were a big crowd and it’s fundamentally impossible to motivate our group to much more than a 1km ‘hike.’ The sun was hot and the sand was hotter, it was about all you could do to stay conscious all day. Exploring required more effort than we would muster smoldering under a scorching summer sun. Temperatures in the shade were reaching 32º+ and borderline uncomfortably frosty dips were important to help revitalize at much needed intervals throughout the day.

Pictured Here

Pictured here: comfortable shade and not-at-all the gateway to someone’s harrowing descent into madness.

Come Sunday, most members of our group made their way back to civilization and only the 3 of us remained; myself, Mitch & Katy. I had mentioned trails or waterfalls I thought I recalled from my youth that were nearby. Back in the day, my parents and I would go camping often. Of the many destinations we visited, Sugar and Mabel Lake were pretty regular. I guess the proximity to our house in Lavington made them pretty ideal for a quick trip away from home and, perhaps more importantly, an equally quick trip back at the end of a sun-baked weekend. We were already on the hunt for firewood that day so we thought we’d kill two birds with one stone, find the campsite host, and ask about any notable landmarks. After all, there is no way this could end with us being chased through the woods by the Blair Witch.

Maybe using the word "kill" was just asking for trouble.

Maybe using the word “kill” was just asking for trouble.

Upon meeting our host, she directed us a short trip up the road. She mentioned Cascade Falls (a place we couldn’t find to save our lives) and, at 15 1/2 forestry kilometer, The Mystic Trail. A ‘magical’ little path whose name is missing about two adjectives and three exclamation points. The campsite host’s description of “a cute little area where someone carved some neat things into the hill” really undersold the horror of what we were about to encounter.

"Oh good. This isn't foreboding."

“Oh good. This isn’t foreboding.”

The trail is adjacent to a haunted bridge and marked by a staggeringly-large amount of shoes nailed to a tree that locals have taken to calling the shoe tree. We won’t speculate why and assume any reason for this name is surely lost to time. Looking back, I suppose it’s my own fault that “neat things” didn’t immediately infer that they would be unspeakably nightmarish things. Maybe I was expecting stick-man drawings on rocks, or GRAD2013, or even Robbie + Julie 4Ever in a heart. Definitely something over-emphasizing the permanence of youth.

Hindsight

Here “someone carved some neat things” like this spinal column, unpleasantly twisted into the guise of the Ogopogo’s evil twin.

Naturally hindsight is 20/20, or it would have been if our eyes weren’t plucked straight from their sockets while tempting the curse of the Mystic Trail that we absolutely didn’t just make up.

I want to believe this place is only unintentionally terrifying and probably meant to evoke feelings of whimsy in adults and children alike. Makes sense. Everyone knows little boys and girls enjoy mutilated skulls and trash dolls displayed in gruesome manners meant to mock death in many creative ways.

I See You

Even with warm, summery Instagram filters, this is only barely passable as the least paralyzing piece of art present.

Now, there’s nothing saying any of these bones or parts are from humans. For example, we escaped alive and slept through the night with only a few mosquito bites to show for it. Had this mockery of the human death experience been made of actual persons we’re pretty sure only one of us would have escaped alive. I’m half-Mexican and Mitch is the big, white guy, sooo clearly the survivor would have been Katy.

"Hey. Haunt here often?"

Especially after I literally taunted the “artwork.”

Jokes aside, it was a pretty sweet little tour and quick way to beat the heat. Just don’t spend the night inside the tiny, abandoned cabin or pee on any of the dolls and you’ll probably make it out unscathed.

That or you'll find yourself buried in this patch of Skull Daisies. Which were exactly as petrifying as you'd expect.

That or you’ll find yourself in this patch of Skull Daisies, which are exactly what you’d think they were if you were expecting them to be lots of tiny bird skulls.

Thanks to Katy (@ktken on Instagram) for snapping pictures while my iPhone cowered in the vehicle.

Fashionate: Stripes!

While it’s not unusual for the picturesque views and locations of the Okanagan to form the backdrop of innumerable photo-shoots, I can bet you’ve never seen African Safari animals involved!

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Recently L.G. photography, hairstylist Melanie Stipdonk and myself teamed up to do a creative shoot at the unbelievably unique Rawhide Ridge Zebra Ranch. With a little help from our friends at Frakas and Nateah Studios, we developed a Warrior Woman Safari setting, right in our own backyard!

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As we made our way to the distinctive farm, we were greeted by quietly perched Peacocks. There were Emu’s casually lounging about and the whole feeling it evoked was sublime. We trudged through mud until we finally came to our location, marked by a bold and striking Zebra. I pulled my high heeled gumboots up and we began what was my first-ever Zebra shoot!

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Equipped with a gorgeous Mink Pink summer frock, a Mink Pink velvet and lace top; both from Frakas, Leopord print shoes by Steve Madden, and Earrings made by Nateah Studios, we investigated gorgeous, sprawling fields in the hopes of making a little magic happen.

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What an opportunity mix real prints and textures together. Adding a pop of colour in a pair of blue shoes, a multi-print dress, or power-clashing leopard and zebra print. Don’t be afraid to wear contrasting colours or prints, just make sure there is one cohesive theme to tie the items together. Frakas is home to some amazing accessories that can help to complete your outfit, whether it’s a colour block bag or a new bib necklace.

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Love these killer shots by A-OK contributor Lise Guyot? Follow her photo postings on our blog!

Trek-It Tuesday: Summer Solstice at the Little Tunnel

Little Tunnel, Naramata

Solstice 2012 – Little Tunnel, Naramata

Summer solstice is nearly here bearing days of exaggerated sunlight so why not take the opportunity to get out and explore this awesome valley of ours. The KVR’s Little Tunnel sits high on the Eastern Hillside, above the village of Naramata, overlooking the South Okanagan valley with sweeping, panoramic views of its entirety; the scattered ponderosa pine and bunchgrass give way to the neatly manicured vineyards of Naramata and then to the beaches and cityscape of Penticton as Skaha Lake disappears around the bend on the horizon. To the West lies Trout Creek and Summerland tucked neatly at the foothills of Giant’s Head with Brent Mountain prominently sat in the mountains beyond and finally to the North, where if you tilt your head just right, you may be able to peer past Okanagan Mountain Prov. Park to Peachland. Be sure to bring your camera! Especially if you decide to come between the two weeks around summer solstice (June 21) where the Sun sets so far North, it peeks through this incredible, cliff-hanging orifice engineered by Andrew McCulloch nearly 100 years ago.

Little Tunnel, Naramata

Perhaps the best thing about this scenic location is most certainly its ease of access for all ages. The KVR’s moderate grade allows for a myriad of methods to travel the 8.8km round-trip route to the tunnel with cycling, walking and driving being the most common of tactics. Be sure to share the trail.

The KVR Trail above Naramata, BC.

Cycling the KVR Trail above Naramata, BC.

If you are arriving from Penticton or Naramata, head along North Naramata road until you reach Smethurst road, a right hand turn heading up the mountainside, and follow it as it meanders up the hillside and intersects with the Kettle Valley Railway at a parking lot about 5 minutes up. Here you can park your car and walk to the tunnel (~1.5 to 2 hours round-trip) or at least read some of the informative maps and boards explaining the history of the KVR and its significance to the local areas. From the parking lot head North (left as you look uphill) and continue along until you reach the tunnel, or stop at some of the old rock ovens that were built by the railroad workers during the construction of the route. It is also possible to arrive from Kelowna along the KVR and past Chute Lake but is more of a full day trip as opposed to a quick excursion however if you do decide to do so, be sure to check out the Big “Adra” Tunnel, also referred to as “McCulloch’s Wonder” for its horseshoe bend through 490m of bed rock, which is situated en route to the Little Tunnel. Happy ventures.

Big "Adra" Tunnel, Naramata

Big “Adra” Tunnel, Naramata

Knox Mountain

Knox Mountain

Now that the rain has eased off, get hiking the great trails on Knox Mountain. Take in some of the incredible views of Okanagan Lake.

Ecotone – The Experience

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There was no shortage of things to see and do at this year’s Ecotone, held in the Rotary Center for the Arts, and while I can’t dream of having been able to cover it all I can give you a taste of my experience in the hopes of getting you out to the next one. This year’s Ecotone was the “6th Annual Local, Organic, and Zero-Waste, Okanagan underground creative gathering known as Conduit”. It featured a massive line-up with events happening simultaneously all throughout the centre.  General Admission was $15 at the door, which opened at 4pm. The event ran until 2am.

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The atrium was the center of the festivities and hosted several drum circles, poets, and musicians. There was everything from hip hop and beat boxing to folk and rock bands. Some performances were accompanied by artists from other disciplines, including a poet who had a melody support their words and a musician who had a visual canvas express their music. It was a great mix of mediums and skills that really displayed the bonds between the people involved in the art community.

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The Arcade room, a pitch dark room lit up by a cool projection in the center, hosted other assorted performances and provided yet another space to dance in; the Alternator Center showed a few shorts created with stop motion film techniques and clay figurines; and the main theater hosted a one-time comedy performance titled “This is Cancer” by Bruce Horak, who lost most of his vision to cancer.

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In the Exhibit Hall and upstairs you could find visual art by dozens of artists displayed on the walls. There was everything from photography to collages to paintings and more. There were also a few interactive installations. One of my favorite was the “stream of consciousness” typewriter that’s fed with a roll of paper towel. Anyone could sit down and contribute anything to the narrative that they felt like sharing.

Continue Reading…

Ecotone 2013 – Tonight!

ecotoneWhere: Rotary Centre for the Arts (421 Cawston Avenue, Kelowna)
When: Saturday, February 2nd, 2013 – 4 PM—2AM
How Much: $10 Students / $15 General / $5 Kids & Alternator Members. All proceeds towards artists making this event possible through the Okanagan Greens Society.
For: Everyone

The annual, local, underground creative gathering known as Ecotone is happening again!

Conduit Collective has once again partnered with the Okanagan Greens Society in creative collaboration with the pan Okanagan creative community to showcase over 100 emerging and established artists, featuring, installation art, sculpture, performance art, activism, gardening, crafts, musical performances, poetry and spoken word.

This is the 6th festival the Conduit Collective has organized, and was created for the purpose of bringing together the gifts, ideas, and talents of established and emerging creative tribes in the Okanagan. For up to date scheduling of performance and artists roster please visit ecotonefestival.ca

“This festival helps support the local arts community, and enables innovation to occur and be recognized. The past six years have been very enlightening as to seeing the support within this community that rarely has the opportunity to gather on mass like this, and we are excited for the experience again this year.” says festival organizer, Gabe Cipes.

Music performances will include Wild Son, Killer Panda, Kinshira and Rumpus Room. There will be original art work on display all around the centre by a number of artists including Kristoff Steinruck, Jordan and David Doody, Meghan Wise, Ullus Collective and Rena Warren just to name a few. The corridors will be filled with tables featuring local crafters wares and activists including Curio Designs, Green City Acres, Green Peace, Scribbled Sun, and many, many more.

This event is designed to harness the diversity of creativity in our community and is not to be missed!

Conduit would like to recognize the support of the Okanagan Greens Society, “Working together in our community for a healthy environment, happy people and a sustainable local economy.” For more information and a full list of contributors, visit the event Facebook page.

Bear Skies

Winter brings the best skies…