Olivier Lebrun has a warning for his neighbours: make sure your vehicles are locked.
Surveillance cameras caught someone trying to break in to vehicles in an area west of Fulton Road in South Vernon at 3:43 a.m. Wednesday June 9.
“The doors were locked as we always make sure to double check all the time, but we would like to make other people in our neighbourhood aware,” Lebrun said.
Lebrun does not know of any vehicles being broken into recently, but has heard of unlocked garden sheds being rummaged through.
He has also heard of items being taken from unlocked cars over the past couple of years.
People are reminded to make sure their vehicles are locked and to leave nothing of value in their vehicles.
Photo: Tracy Lutz-Noel
Today’s Bug of the Week looks like the thing of nightmares to those with arachnophobia.
Tracy Lutz-Noel sent in a picture of what she believes is a large wolf spider.
But it’s not necessarily the size of this eight-legged beast that is eye catching. Rather, it’s the fact it is carrying a whole bunch of baby spiders on its back – making it look super creepy.
“The female wolf spider carries her babies on her back until they are fully developed,” says Lutz-Noel.
It can take weeks for the “spiderlings” as she calls them to become independent.
“They will go everywhere with her, including hunting. If one falls off, she will stop what she is doing until it gets back on,” Lutz-Noel said after researching the critter.
Wolf spiders are robust and agile hunters with excellent eyesight. They live mostly in solitude and hunt alone, and do not spin webs. Some are opportunistic hunters, pouncing upon prey as they find it or even chasing it over short distances. Some wait for passing prey in or near the mouth of a burrow.
In other words, they like to hide in spots where they can pounce on their next meal. But don’t worry, they’re highly unlikely to pounce on a person.
Speaking from experience, make sure to shake out any clothing that may be drying outside and give those work gloves a quick look inside before you put them on – you never know what might have set up shop.
The good news is, wolf spiders are not very aggressive and are not harmful if they do bite someone.
Have you had a creepy crawly encounter? Send us a picture to [email protected].
A 15-month closure has taken its toll on a Vernon nightclub, but its owner is eagerly anticipating a reopening soon.
Saverio Loria is awaiting further direction in the next round of easing to provincial pandemic restrictions, but is already taking steps behind the scenes to get ready at Status Nightclub.
The club was last open on March 14 of last year and was officially closed down along with clubs across the province on March 17.
“Once the province lays out the details, I can make a good call on reopening,” Loria said Wednesday.
Even if he were able to reopen, right now, regulations don’t allow for dancefloors. If that continues, Loria says he’ll stay closed. A lot will depend on what capacity limits will look like.
“I want to be able to give the full nightclub experience,” he said.
During the closure, Loria put his liquor licence into dormancy and the club into mothballs. He’s got a big job ahead of him to reopen.
“There’s staffing, restocking, cleaning … I’ll have to order beer, pop, cable, Interac terminals, get an ATM back in here. If don’t do it, then I can’t open. Then, I’ll need a little time to promote.
“I’m planning on it (reopening), but it’s not for sure yet.”
He says since putting the word out quietly that he’s looking for staff, his phone “has been ringing off the hook.”
Until the province’s June 15 Step 2 announcement, he’s in waiting mode.
“Will it be worth it? Or do I wait until September and do a full opening?” he said.
Step 3 in the provincial reopening comes July 1, and Step 4 after Labour Day – but all restriction easing will depend on vaccination and case number targets being met.
During the closure, Loria says he has received pandemic supports, but he will be “in debt to the government the minute I open.”
He had to let 13 staff go when he closed down, and will staff accordingly depending on what is allowed in the next round of the reopening.
“I feel there will be a big demand,” he says. “People haven’t been allowed to go out and have fun for a long time.”
Photo: Tom Lewis
A cinnamon-black bear went for a quick stay at a rural bed and breakfast in Coldstream.
Tom Lewis, who runs the bed and breakfast from his country estate in Coldstream, called Telemark Ridge Lodge, spotted the bear strolling through the garden.
Lewis posted pictures of the bear in the, Hell Yeah Vernon! Group on Facebook.
“I think I had just come into our kitchen when I spotted the bear wandering past our garden office and toward our garden,” said Lewis.
He said the bear stopped below the bird feeder that hangs in a group of alder trees and that’s when the bear started to climb up the tree.
“The bear made it up the feeder and then started licking the seeds from the bottom, luckily it was almost empty or he may have pulled it down,” said Lewis.
The bear then made its way to a second tree to get to a small bird house, which, unfortunately for the bear, was also empty.
After some snooping around for food Lewis said the bear “scampered into the wooded area,” behind his garden office building.
Lewis’ wife posted a video of the bear to her Facebook page.
Jennifer Cramer Lewis
Photo: Victoria Femia
Interior Health is bringing its mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic to Falkland.
The clinic will make a stop in Falkland on June 12 for anyone who has not yet received their first dose of the vaccine.
No advance appointments are necessary for the clinic, and people who live or work in the Falkland area will be able to walk up, register and receive the vaccination.
Interior Health’s mobile immunization clinics are a partnership with the British Columbia Automobile Association and are travelling through the Interior, making stops in more than 40 communities.
The clinic will be set up at the Falkland Rodeo Grounds on Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
People born in 2009 or earlier and who have not yet received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine are eligible for the shot in the arm.
Falkland residents who are not able to attend the mobile clinic can still receive a vaccine at other times by booking an appointment through the provincial system and visiting a nearby clinic.
There are three ways to register and schedule a COVID-19 vaccine:
- Online by visiting the provincial website
- By phone at 1-833-838-2323
- In person at a Service BC office listed here.
For a list of all Interior Health COVID-19 immunization clinics and other resources click here.
Vernon RCMP have taken a bite out of crime in the downtown core with several recent arrests.
A six-member team, comprised of the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP’s Crime Reduction Unit and general duty officers, conducted targeted enforcement to address issues in the downtown core and high-crime areas of the city.
Const. Chris Terleski says the Enhanced Downtown Enforcement Initiative was developed through consultation and in partnership with the Downtown Vernon Association and other stakeholders.
“The proactive crime-reduction initiative focused on addressing criminal activity impacting the downtown community of Vernon,” Terleski said.
Over nine days in April and May, police managed and self-generated 162 investigations, executed 33 arrest warrants and recovered a quantity of stolen property.
Terleski said open drug use and incidents related to it, such as loitering, trespassing and property offences, were the predominant issues encountered by officers.
“The EDEI allows us to use a window of targeted enforcement to mitigate and decrease criminal activity in the downtown area as we head into the busy summer months,” said Terleski.
“While we continue to address these issued through a consistent policing approach throughout the year, this targeted effort allows us to reduce crime and ensure downtown Vernon remains a safe and enjoyable place for everyone.”
A Vernon woman is running from Vernon to Kelowna in support of the KGH Foundation advanced stroke care clinic fundraiser.
Lauren Barrie’s mother Maureen Crowley suffered a stroke in June of 2011 when she was just 46 years old. She spent three months in total at the Kelowna General Hospital, so when her daughter heard that KGH was fundraising for a new stroke clinic, she decided to show her support for her mom and others by running 50 kilometres and raising donations that will directly go towards the new stroke clinic.
The run will take place on June 13, and so far Barrie has already raised $2,500, well over her starting goal of $1,000. She says seeing her mom get through her stroke and continue to march forward is what gives her the motivation to complete the run.
“Just seeing her go through what she did, and the battles of the aftermath from the stroke and the strength that she showed made me realize that for me when i’m running, I know after 30 kilometres things will start to hurt, but I can do this because I’ve seen my mom stand up again and again.”
On the 10-year anniversary of her stroke, Crowley is said to be doing very well. Barrie says the care her mother received at the KGH was great.
“She spent a couple weeks in the hospital itself and then she was moved to their rehab clinic. She is so grateful for the care she received and obviously we are as well. The fact that she’s still here with us and functioning well, we just have nothing but good things to say.”
Barrie’s donation page is directly linked to the KGH’s new stroke clinic fundraiser, and you can donate here. Health officials are asking the community to help raise $8 million in donations that would go towards acute care equipment at KGH, as well as the care for stroke victims.
Photo: Darren Handschuh
UPDATE 3:39 p.m.
Vernon RCMP are asking for anyone who witnessed a motorcycle accident Thursday to contact them.
Const. Chris Terleski said just before noon, police received a report of a collision involving a motorcycle and a passenger vehicle at the intersection of 26th Street and 32nd Avenue.
“Frontline officers attended the location and after speaking to witnesses and the individuals involved, determined a motorcycle travelling eastbound on 32nd Avenue struck the side of a passenger vehicle in the intersection,” said Terleski.
“The operator of the motorcycle was transported from the scene by BC Ambulance Service for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.”
The incident remains under investigation and anyone who witnessed the collision, and has not already spoken to police, is asked to contact Const. Helgerson at 250-545-7171.
ORIGINAL 12:33 P.M.
A motorcycle rider was rushed to hospital following a collision in Vernon’s lower East Hill neighbourhood around midday.
The motorcycle and a vehicle collided just before noon at the intersection of 26th Street and 32nd Avenue.
Vernon RCMP, firefighters and ambulance crews attended the scene.
The extent of the motorcycle rider’s injuries are not known at this time, but it appeared the man was talking with emergency crews prior to being placed in an ambulance and taken to Vernon Jubilee Hospital.
Photo: Daryl Robertson
UPDATE: 12:10 p.m.
Okanagan Indian Band communications officer Nick Nilsen says OKIB firefighters were not dispatched to an early morning that reduced a trailer to ashes.
Neighbours believe the fire to be suspicious, as the trailer had been empty for years.
An apparently abandoned RV burned to the ground off Westside Road early Thursday.
The trailer was reduced to a smouldering frame and ashes after the fire began about 4 a.m., according to residents of the area.
The fire scene was about seven kilometres from the north end of Westside Road, on Okanagan Indian Band land.
According to neighbours, no one has lived in the trailer for years.
It’s not yet known what caused the fire or if anyone was injured in the incident.
Castanet has reached out to the OKIB for more information.
Photo: Bernadette O’Donnell
Bernadette O’Donnell was left heartbroken after thieves sunk to a new low in Vernon, stealing a memorial to the 215 residential school bodies in Kamloops.
The nation was stunned and shocked when the remains of 215 children were found last month.
In a show of support and solidarity, Every Child Matters memorials have popped up across the country.
O’Donnell, who works with the FASD Okanagan Valley Assessment and Support Society in Vernon’s People Place building next to Linear Park, said items were stolen from the memorial within an hour of it being set up.
By the next morning, everything was gone.
O’Donnell said it was hoped more people would add to the memorial in honour of Canada’s first people.
“We wanted the community to be a part of it,” said O’Donnell. “Because there is so much traffic that is there, it would have been a wonderful opportunity to put more teddy bears and flowers – it would just make a statement to all the Indigenous people who are in our area.”
Instead, O’Donnell has been left disheartened.
She was working in her office when she noticed some activity outside, and when she went to look, part of the memorial had been stolen.
Among the items taken were a healing rock that was given to her by a member of the Okanagan Indian Band as well as candles, shirts, stuffies and even the table cloth the items were laid out on.
“I was shocked and heartbroken,” said O’Donnell.
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