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Events celebrate Earth Day in North Okanagan

Artisan Market, expo, fair, tree giveaway, book launch take place
Kiki the Eco Elf performs at the Museum and Archives of Vernon April 23. (Contributed)

Earth is being honoured with plenty of green initiatives around the region.

A special Earth Day market will be popping up in Civic Square Saturday, April 23 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Polson Artisan Night Market organizer Mayla Janzen is eager to kick off the market season on this special day.

“Our vendors are quite often promoting sustainable, locally made products, so it’s a great fit to set up for the Earth Expo at the Museum,” she said.

Earth Expo features artwork and projects contributed by local students in honour of Earth Day at the Museum and Archives of Vernon. The Imagining Sustainable Futures exhibit officially opens at the Museum April 21 and continues until May 20. Admission is by donation.

“We received so many incredible submissions for the exhibition, we want to ensure the public has an opportunity to come together and celebrate the creativity, innovation and imagination that is the Earth Expo,” program coordinator Amy Timleck said.

“When we talk about climate crisis it can feel really overwhelming, and what we see through the eyes of local youth is that there is, indeed, hope.”

The Earth Day Celebration will feature special events, including a visit from Kiki the Eco Elf at 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

Kiki, aka Tanya Lipscomb, is an award-winning, touring singer/songwriter, who has a big heart for the environment.

“Well, you see, my dad is half elf (his mum was full elf), and so I am a quarter elf, and I care about ecological sustainability as well as environmental awareness,” she said.”I yearn to inspire, educate and encourage this generation to make choices and changes that will positively affect future generations.”

Lipscomb, who is also opening a farm-to-table vegan taco truck in May, aims to change the world with her messages.

“With diligence, discipline and inspiring others to invite more joy, gratitude, presence, compassion and sustainable choices into their lives.”

Limited tickets to her Museum performance are available via Eventbrite at

At the same time a little north of Vernon, a Green Fair will fill the IPE grounds in Armstrong Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Armstrong Spallumcheen Environmental Trust is hosting the event in celebration of Earth Day.

Back in Vernon there is also a tree giveaway hosted by the Sustainable Environment Network Society (SENS) at Nature’s Fare from 10 a.m. to noon. To promote tree planting projects in the North Okanagan, 2,000 trees will be given away.

“We can all help to leave the world a better place for our children and grandchildren by helping to reverse global warming by planting trees,” said SENS member Terry Dyck.

Speaking of trees, and the thousands that were burnt in the 2021 area wildfires, a special book has been created reflecting on the local situation. Virginia Dansereau, Sue Urquhart and Heather Clay have compiled photographs, painting, poems and quotes from the fires with the book Smoke and Ash. The authors are hosting a book launch at the Elks Lodge April 23 from 1:30-2:30 p.m.

The Earth Expo artisan market in front of the Vernon Museum will be the first of many themed markets planned for the year.

“We’ve spent our off season having meetings with other organizations, businesses and artisans in town to create a series of community involvement themes for the market,” said Janzen.

“We’d like there to be different sorts of experiences for each market of the season, in addition to a rotation of food, clothing, produce, art and crafted goods. We’ve been working with Local Losers, an art and music showroom downtown, to bring in more local musicians for feature music nights. We’re planning to host One Yoga Vernon for a yoga night in the park. We’re also working on a summer series with SilverStar.”

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Virginia Dansereau, Sue Urquhart and Heather Clay launch their book, Smoke and Ash, at the Elks Lodge April 23 from 1:30-2:30 p.m. (Contributed)

Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

Vernon has always been my home, and I've been working at The Morning Star since 2004.
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