Wrap up and join in the fun at the Winter in Wine Country Festival; two weekends of festive, family-friendly events in the communities of Oliver and Osoyoos.
On Friday November 27 and Saturday November 28, Oliver’s Community Light Up & Fireworks brings families together to celebrate the start of the festive season and put some sparkle into the winter months. Bring the kids along for pictures with Santa, fun entertainment for all the family and a bonfire and fireworks, all taking place at the Oliver Community Park Band Shell.
Arrange childcare and head to Hester Creek Estate Winery, where the Oliver Tourism Association will host Rosé Revolution on Saturday November 28. This celebration of the 18 local wineries producing Rosé wines features food pairing stations, live music and a people’s choice award; a timely reminder that Rosé is the perfect match for a Christmas turkey! Tickets cost $35 per person, available at the Oliver Visitor Centre and Imperial Office Pro in Osoyoos, or via Eventbrite.ca.
The following day (Sunday November 29), head to Watermark Beach Resort for a Winter Wonderland Brunch, starting at 9am. Chef Adair Scott shows his flair for farm to table dining, with a delicious brunch menu that showcases the bounty of local produce available in the area. Brunch costs $35 per person (plus tax and gratuity), for reservations please call 250-495-5508.
On Friday December 4 and Saturday December 5, it’s Osoyoos’ turn to shine with their Community Light Up & Parade. Families can enjoy Kiwanis craft sale, Smitty’s Toys for Tots to Teens fundraising breakfast, breakfast with Santa and Mrs Claus and a Christmas Parade, before heading up to NK’MIP Resort to see the annual Festival of Trees, which runs until January 3.
Also on Friday December 4, Watermark Beach Resort hosts the premiere of Ventures in Wine Country, a series that goes behind the scenes of the wine industry, following three Okanagan winemakers. Raise a glass and chat with the producers and hosts of the show at the event.
Thirty Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association members will open their doors for the Winter in Wine Country Festival. They will all be dressed up for the season with Christmas decorations and offering roasted chestnuts, classic carol singing and wine tastings. Winery tours will be offered by Top Cat Tours for both weekends, starting from $35 per person, including transportation and tasting.
For more information please visit the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association website: www.oliverosoyoos.com/Events/Winter-in-Wine-Country.
Ready? Get set to grab your running shoes and your wine glasses because the race is on to register for tickets for the 2016 Half Corked Marathon.
On November 17th at 9am, general ticket lottery registration will open for the sixth annual Half Corked Marathon – a fun 18km race through the wineries and vineyards of the Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country – with the lottery closing on November 23, 2015 at 11:59pm.
Runners usually aim for their personal best in races but at the Half Corked Marathon the prizes are for creative costumes, not race times, and the refreshments along the way are some of Canada’s very best wines. Inspired by the legendary Medoc Marathon in Bordeaux, the Half Corked Marathon is a homage to one of Canada’s most decorated wine regions. Participants are encouraged to sample wines from the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association along the way, paired with celebrated regional cuisine from local chefs, restaurateurs and café owners, as they run or jog the 18km route.
“Half Corked Marathon gives visitors a true taste of our region,” says Jennifer Busmann from the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association. “Visitors can enjoy an unforgettable weekend in Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country and get a flavour of the wide range of wineries with a burst of springtime sunshine.”
Tickets for the marathon cost $165 plus tax per person. Tickets are in such hot demand that a lottery system will once again be used to distribute them this year. After sign up, each lucky person randomly chosen from the database will have the chance to purchase two tickets for the event. Tickets for additional weekend events (including the pre-race Primavera! dinner) will be announced shortly.
Spectators can join in the fun and enjoy wine tasting, music and local food trucks at the Finish Line Lunch and throughout the weekend as participating wineries will be offering special events, deals and open days. Local hotels, resorts, B&Bs and RV parks will also be offering special rates and packages for the weekend.
Celebrations start on Friday, May 27, 2016, with the spring-themed Primavera! dinner – an al fresco gourmet pasta party set amongst the vineyards, which is a chance to make new friends and load up on carbs before race day. On Saturday, May 28, 2016, runners will set off in waves to run or jog the 18km route. The race trail leads through the incredible surrounds of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country and brings together the region’s winemakers, chefs and producers, all of whom whole-heartedly embrace the event with refreshment and wine tasting stations along the route, hearty picnics post-run and the highly anticipated pre-race Primavera! dinner.
For more information please visit the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association website: www.oliverosoyoos.com/halfcorked.