A large audience enjoys the music at the annual NimbleFingers Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival held at the Sorrento Centre in August.

A large audience enjoys the music at the annual NimbleFingers Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival held at the Sorrento Centre in August.

South Shuswap: Looking back at 2014

Year in review: The headlines from July to December.

  • Jan. 8, 2015 9:00 a.m.


• The multi-media Shuswap Lake Festival of the Arts was temporarily derailed in what would have been its 31st year. Festival society chair Chris George said the festival board wants to revamp the experience.

• A sawdust pile beside Lakeside Timber mill spontaneously combusted on July 19 and spread to a nearby, 12- to -15-foot pile of railway ties. Firefighters were on scene for close to four hours. The following day, a driver saw smoke and called it in.

Firefighters returned and quickly doused the hot spots.

• Sorrento Centre mourned the loss of executive director Dr. Christopher Lind, esteemed Anglican theologian, social activist and ethicist, who succumbed to inoperable brain cancer.

• Thirteen local community “Heroes of the Shuswap” are featured in a fundraising calendar. The heroes were selected from 40 nominations by a panel of judges and include people from several Shuswap communities.


• The NimbleFingers music festival returned to Sorrento on  Aug. 23. The music-lovers’ festival attracts an international lineup of stellar acts.

• Partners gathered from around the Shuswap on Aug. 21 to celebrate the official opening of the new Mount Baldy hiking trail west of Sorrento.


• Two collisions on the Trans-Canada Highway at Tappen put the brakes on long-weekend traffic on Aug. 30. The first crash happened at 11:41 a.m. near the Tappen Co-op gas station.

While emergency crews were attending the first crash, another collision took place at 12:45 p.m. three kilometres west near Ford Road. A motorcycle heading east collided with a pickup truck. The male motorcycle driver and female passenger both sustained serious injuries and were transported to hospital in Kamloops.

• South Shuswap Health Services Society sponsored the establishment of the Copper Island Seniors Resource Centre in Blind Bay, to be located in the former chamber of commerce/tourism information centre, with a planned opening the last week of September.

• The CSRD ended discussion on the possible purchase of Centennial Park.

The regional district previously had some negotiations with Shuswap Lake Estates Ltd., owner of the park that is used for many South Shuswap community events. The negotiations were “related to a potential purchase price for evaluation purposes on the 2690 Centennial Drive property, for consideration of the property for potential park use,” said a Sept. 10 CSRD news release that deemed the negotiations unsuccessful. “It is possible that a future regional board may wish to consider acquisition of the property for community use, but for the time being this matter is closed.”

• The pickleball courts at Shuswap Lake Estates officially opened, with more than 60 individuals participating in a two-day event.


• The Shuswap’s Better at Home program expanded its outreach to better assist seniors to remain independent.

• The South Shuswap Chamber of Commerce celebrated the vital role small businesses play in the region during Small Business Week.

• Friends of the Notch Hill Church Society began reconstruction of the Roman Catholic Holy Cross Church that has been abandoned since the 1970s and was near collapse.

• Four all-candidates meetings gave residents the opportunity to hear from Area C candidates – incumbent Paul Demenok, Alan McClelland and Richard Norman.


• Richard Norman, Area C South Shuswap candidate for election to the CSRD board, advised attendees of his intention to withdraw from the municipal race at an all-candidates meeting held at Sorrento Memorial Hall. The Ministry of Community, Sport & Cultural Development did not permit the withdrawal.

• November marked the one-year anniversary of the opening of the Sorrento & Area Community Health Centre, which has quickly become an established part of the community.

• Sunnybrae residents asked the CSRD board for support in turning 19.5 hectares of waterfront industrial land adjacent to Herald Provincial Park into a conservation park. The area has long been used as a log boom for temporary storage prior to land and lake transportation of timber, and has been valued at $2.9 million. The board referred the matter to CSRD staff, to be brought back at a later date.

• After five years of successful shows across Western Canada, the cast and crew of the Louisiana Hayride Show returned with a very special Christmas show.

This unique performance featured some of the most popular hits from the Louisiana Hayride Show as well as favourite holiday songs.


• The Copper Island Senior’s Resource Centre located beside the Shuswap Lake Estates Community Centre, opened its doors,  Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with staff ready to help with a variety of support services.

• A Grade 5 class from Sorrento Elementary received a $1,000 award from BC Hydro’s Community Champions program to support a conservation project in their school. The class will use the money to explore how wilderness near their school and promote well-being and respect for the environment.

• A 56-year-old female driver from Blind Bay lost control of her vehicle at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 16. . It struck a culvert and came to rest on its roof, trapping the driver for about half-an-hour. The woman was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

• The CP Rail Holiday Train rolled into Notch Hill on Dec. 15, and the railway presented Jim Chisholm, who is in charge of Sorrento’s food bank, with a cheque for $4,000.  A crowd of between about 1,000 people donated close to 3,500 pounds of food as well as cash donations.