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South Okanagan farmers, ranchers invited to gear up for wildfire season

Event will be held in Princeton April 13
The Champion Creek wildfire, west of Princeton, burned in September, 2022. This year, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen is holding a forum to help farmers and ranchers for the wildfire season. (Photo by Tulameen and District Fire Department Facebook)

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen is holding a free forum to help farmers and ranchers prepare for the upcoming wildfire season.

The regional district’s FireSmart team is urging owners of small and large farms and ranches to register for the Agriculture Wildfire Preparedness Forum. The forum is scheduled for Thursday, April 13 at RockRidge Canyon Resort and Conference Centre in Princeton.

“By bringing people together, we can collaborate and share experiences that will help farmers and ranchers plan for any potential emergency,” said Hayden Zahrawi, wildfire mitigation specialist with the regional district.

“Some participants have already been through wildfires or evacuations, and with these discussions, we can learn from the past and be better prepared for future wildfires.”

The forum will include presentations by BC Wildfire Service, the regional district’s FireSmart team, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, and others. Participants will learn how to create a farm and ranch wildfire plan and can participate or glean information from panel and group discussions. Lunch will be provided.

Zahrawi said farms and ranches are often in high-risk locations, backing onto the wildfire interface. He said the forum will help people protect their properties for the upcoming wildfire season.

Farmers and ranchers must register before April 6. Visit the online registration form or email

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John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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