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Park honours the Sovereigns

A new name for a Coldstream park reflects the passion its former owners had for the community.

Coldstream Centennial Park on Kidston Road will become Sovereign Park after a vote of the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee Thursday.

“The community refers to it as the Sovereign property, that’s the reality,” said director Jim Garlick.

“The community has taken ownership and named it themselves.”

The park will be named for Art Sovereign, a longtime pediatrician, and his wife Agnes, an avid community volunteer.

The couple, who bought the property in 1962, died in 2002.

The Regional District of North Okanagan purchased the site in 2003 and it was named Coldstream Centennial Park in 2007 after a public contest.

The District of Coldstream initiated a survey this summer which indicated public support for the Sovereign name, although RDNO policy states a park can only be named after a person if that individual donated 50 per cent or more of the funds to purchase the land or donated at least 50 per cent of the property.

The 5.3-acre property was purchased for $1.6 million.

“It (Sovereign name) doesn’t fit with the policy but it’s important to recognize who those people are,” said Garlick.

“The land was given at considerably less than market value and the family did it out of the goodness of their heart.”

Renaming the park was unanimous among GVAC members.

“There was an exceptional nature of this family towards the community,” said director Mike Macnabb.

“I hope we will have more families like the Sovereigns contributing park at a nominal fee.”

 

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