The Vernon Secondary School Class of 2020 revived an old tradition Wednesday, June 17, 2020, becoming the school’s first graduating class since 1981 to paint Suicide Hill at the east end of 30th Avenue. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

Vernon’s Suicide Hill set for a scrubbing

VSS Class of 2020 made their mark for the first time in nearly 40 years, now it’s time to clean

Classes have resumed and the Class of 2020’s marks on Suicide Hill are ready for removal.

The City of Vernon closed 30th Street, locally known as Suicide Hill, in June to allow for the students of Vernon Secondary School to make their mark.

Reviving the tradition was the graduating class’ ‘Plan F’ to celebrate the milestone amid the COVID-19 pandemic. But the deal council struck with the school board was it must remove the paint from the roadway ahead of its Sept. 4 reopening.

The roadway was closed until early September to ensure motorists safety, city staff told council June 8. Covering large portions of roadway in spray paint can create slippery conditions and the markings would be unfamiliar to drivers, a report to council read. Plus, staff said, without vehicles on the road, the paint would last longer and stay vibrant.

At the Sept. 28 meeting, Coun. Akbal Mund brought it to his council colleagues attention that the paint is still on the road.

“The plan was to take it off,” he said. “It’s been up there with no concerns. I struggled with closing it but it’s been open for a month and we haven’t heard anything.”

City administration confirmed the school is responsible for the removal of the paint, communications manager Christy Poirier said.

“VSS and city staff have worked together on the matter,” she said. “VSS has decided to have the city’s contractor remove the paint and then the costs will be covered by the school.”

The paint is to come off sometime this week.

The Class of 2020 was the first in nearly 40 years to spray paint Suicide Hill.

Vernon Museum and Archives’ community engagement coordinator Gwyneth Evans said the reason the tradition of painting Suicide Hill was stopped after 1981 was that the spray paint “allegedly” spread to adjacent areas.

“I also suspect it was deemed too dangerous,” she said.

The following year, the grad Class of ‘82 painted the VSS parking lot in lieu, Evans said.

READ MORE: Breast is still best, even during a pandemic, UBC Okanagan research finds

READ MORE: Canada’s top doctor gives tips for COVID-safe Thanksgiving amid high daily cases


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

selfie.
Morning Start: Selfies Kill More People Than Sharks

Your morning start for Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020

Chris Marchand
Survivors spread reconciliation with Vernon’s cultural partners

Cultural Safety Program facilitated by Syilx elders

(Submitted by Cassidi Markus)
Snow flurries forecasted for the Okanagan this weekend

Arctic front expected to bring colder than average temperatures and snow

A health-care worker prepares to swab a man at a walk-in COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal North, Sunday, May 10, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes)
Interior Health records 21 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend

Thirty-six cases remain active; two people are in the hospital, one of whom is in intensive care

The District of Lake Country closed down the controversial Airport Inn Lakeside motel in 2019. (Daniel Taylor - Black Press file)
Asking price for controversial Airport Inn in Lake Country dropped to $6.9M

‘Lake Country is too precious a place to not have something great there,’ Realtor says

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry answers questions during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. sees record-breaking daily COVID infections with 499 new cases over weekend

Two people, both in the Lower Mainland, died due to the virus over the weekend

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

With local MLA Adam Olsen looking on, BC Greens leader Sonia Furstenau said a Green government would convert BC Ferries into a Crown corporation Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Green leader Sonia Furstenau promises to convert BC Ferries back into Crown corporation

Promise comes Monday afternoon with five days left in campaign

Junction 3 Coffeehouse in Osoyoos has found a creative way for customers to enjoy a cup of coffee outdoors in their own safe bubble. (Junction 3 photo)
Hangout in your own personal bubble at this South Okanagan cafe

Osoyoos cafe gets creative under COVID-19 restrictions

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Kelowna man charged after allegedly stealing senior’s car

Elderly woman’s car was stolen while she was shopping

Salmon Arm RCMP say residents have been receiving calls from fraudster claiming to be with Publishers Clearing House. (File photo)
Salmon Arm RCMP warn of Publishers Clearing House telephone scam

Police say scammer requests fee to claim sweepstakes prizes

Osoyoos Fire Department responded to reports of a vehicle engulfed in flames Sunday (Oct. 18) evening at a Lambert Court residence. (Osoyoos Fire Department)
Osoyoos Fire Department knock down car fire near home

Blaze was ‘really close’ to becoming a structure fire

A passer-by walks past a COVID-19 testing clinic in Montreal, Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada ‘yet to see’ deaths due to recent COVID surge as cases hit 200,000

Much of the increase in case numbers can be attributed to Ontario and Quebec

Police confirm human remains were found in a recycling bin in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Human remains found in recycling bin floating near Vancouver beach

Police asking nearby residents to see if their recycling bin has gone missing

Most Read