Okanagan Secrets & Spots: For Live Arts, Music & Movies
Vernon, BC – A thriving, creative community of approximately 48,073 people, nestled in the heart of the Okanagan Valley. Where art, culture, and heritage are celebrated, encouraged, and a cup of delicious coffee is always waiting for a good stroll downtown!
In this series, Krystal will explore our little slice of the Okanagan, and beyond, including the people and places that are as unique as the region they come from and the local secrets and spots that Okanaganites love to explore.
We have A LOT of Secrets & Spots in the Okanagan for you and your family to explore!
The Okanagan is made up of many cultures, all of which have helped shape this beautiful region that Sproing calls home. From community theatres to art galleries and plenty of popular events, we have a thriving live arts community, rooted in culture and history. There is somewhere to explore and something to do no matter the time of year.
Check out a live performances at the Vernon & District Performing Arts Centre, Powerhouse Theatre, or the Caravan Farm Theatre and experience live theatre at its best.
With fascinating histories and talented artists, these theatres are an exciting experience in themselves!
Experience premier sound, comfortable seats and “one of the most comfortable auditoriums in the province” with the Vernon & District Performing Arts Centre. Built in 2001, this performing arts center is a hub for local performances and national tours, as well as community events.
Their Spotlight Series features 5 categories: Dance, Theatre, Kids (for ages 5+), First Stages (for ages 2+) and Special shows throughout the year. For a complete listing of their shows or to subscribe to one of the Spotlight Series, head over to their website.
The Powerhouse theatre is a small theatre in one of Vernon’s historic buildings. Check out their latest production, sign up to become a member or volunteer to help out back stage. This theatre frequently holds audition calls for their plays and welcomes anyone who would like to volunteer or become a member.
Originally slated for demolition, a group of volunteers petitioned the city to turn the building into a theatre instead. The plans were presented on the day the building was going to be demolished. Over 40 years later, thousands of volunteer hours and a ton of awards and the Powerhouse theatre is still going strong.
Check out their website for the latest performance, audition calls or more information on the people and history of this amazing theatre.
Did you know? The Powerhouse Theatre started its life as Vernon’s electrical Powerhouse and was founded in 1963. It is rumored to be haunted by at least 3 ghosts. True North Paranormal did an investigation in 2018 at this location. http://www.truenorthparanormal.com
The Caravan Farm Theatre is an outdoor theatre located just outside of Armstrong. With 80 acres of farmland there is no end to the variety of performances this amazing and talented group can put on. There are no roofs (except in the barn), just seats and the beautiful blue, or starry, sky above. With a variety of performances year round, this is one place you have to see to believe.
“Hailed as a national treasure, Caravan Farm Theatre is one of Canada’s premiere professional outdoor theatre companies, and has been entertaining audiences young and old, from near and far, since 1978. Annual productions include The Halloween Walk of Terror, a Winter one-act sleigh ride show, and in Summer, a full length musical.” – Caravan Farm Theatre website
You can find live music almost anywhere in the Okanagan. Check out local event listings for more live music events.
In the summer, sit on a blanket and listen to some local musicians at Civic Sounds in Downtown Vernon. Every Thursday from July to August, 6pm to 8pm, this free event runs at various locations and features local musicians. Grab your picnic blanket and head to Downtown Vernon for some amazing local sounds. For more information on this event, and many other, check out the Downtown Vernon Association Website.
Take in the annual A&W Music Festival, held at the same time as Funtastic Slo-Pitch Tournament, during Canada Day Long Weekend. This event is popular with tourists and locals alike. With headliner and local bands this is an excellent way to spend the long weekend. Take a look at their website for more information on the tournament or the music festival.
Did you Know? Funtastic is the BIGGEST Slo-Pitch Tournament and Music Festival in Canada! I t has been running since 1984 and the society that runs it is a non-profit society who has put more than 1.7 million dollars back into the community.
If a night at the movies is what you seek, check out one of these three theatres.
Galaxy Cinemas is a part of the famous Cineplex chain and features 7 movies screen (three are 3D) and 1 party room. With a full concession, reserved seats available for some movies and plenty of Hollywood and Independent films, this theatre is full service.
The Vernon Towne Cinema is rumored to be one of the most haunted places in Western Canada. Locals and employees have named the ghost, Lloyd, and he is thought to be the original owner of the theatre. It is one of the stops on the Vernon Ghost Tour, held around Halloween every year, and was the subject of a paranormal investigation by, True North Paranormal in 2017.
Did you Know? The Vernon Towne Cinema originally opened in 1929 as a Dance Hall and Live Entertainment Venue but was converted to a Motion Picture Theatre in 1939. They still have the original 35mm film reel equipment too!
This unique movie theatre in Enderby, is a blast form the past. With the best concession prices around and double features every night, this experience is one for the whole family. Open from May to September, this outdoor movie theatre is pet friendly, and an excellent way take in a great movie (or two!). There is always a family feature included in the nightly screenings and movies change weekly. Rain doesn’t stop the show either, these movies play rain or shine!https://www.youtube.com/embed/KIWm3OxHTGM
Did you know? The Starlight drive in has “the largest screen in North America”! With a screen area of 6000 square feet and a height of 50 feet, this 120 foot wide screen lets you see all the details, no matter where you are parked.
There is no end to the ways that one can immerse in the local arts culture in Vernon. Our community is a community of teachers, artists, authors, parents, entrepreneurs, visionaries, and scientists. We love to share our history, our events and our local creations with anyone who will stop and listen. Include some arts and culture on your next vacation, or staycation, and take in the local culture.
There is so much more to do here than just the above! Check out more unique things to do on the Downtown Vernon Association, City of Vernon and Tourism Vernon websites: