2020 in photos: Kelowna’s most memorable moments of the year

As the year draws to a close, the Kelowna Capital News is featuring its best photos of the year

As the year draws to a close, the Capital News is featuring its best photos of the year, which captured some of Kelowna’s most memorable moments of 2020.

Hundreds gather outside the Kelowna Law Courts on Feb. 9 in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en First Nation in its fight against the Coastal Gaslink Pipeline. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Hundreds gather outside the Kelowna Law Courts on Feb. 9 in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en First Nation in its fight against the Coastal Gaslink Pipeline. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Four Kelowna city councillors participate in a meeting by video conference on March 23. The COVID-19 pandemic upended regular municipal government processes due to public health orders restricting in-person gatherings. Public hearings were postponed early in the pandemic and several procedures were changed to allow for less contact between councillors. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Four Kelowna city councillors participate in a meeting by video conference on March 23. The COVID-19 pandemic upended regular municipal government processes due to public health orders restricting in-person gatherings. Public hearings were postponed early in the pandemic and several procedures were changed to allow for less contact between councillors. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Members of Kelowna’s Sikh community take to the streets, horns blaring, in front of Kelowna General Hospital on April 14. The previous weekend, the community was meant to celebrate Vaisakhi but due to the ongoing pandemic, several events were cancelled. Usually, a colourful parade is held on Kelowna streets but this year they took the parade to their cars and decided to show their support for local health-care workers. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)

Members of Kelowna’s Sikh community take to the streets, horns blaring, in front of Kelowna General Hospital on April 14. The previous weekend, the community was meant to celebrate Vaisakhi but due to the ongoing pandemic, several events were cancelled. Usually, a colourful parade is held on Kelowna streets but this year they took the parade to their cars and decided to show their support for local health-care workers. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)

A health-care worker at Kelowna General Hospital holds up a peace sign from a window above the hospital’s emergency room on April 14. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

A health-care worker at Kelowna General Hospital holds up a peace sign from a window above the hospital’s emergency room on April 14. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Protesters gather in Kelowna’s Stuart Park on June 5, 2020, during a Black Lives Matter rally. The death of George Floyd under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer in late May sparked protests in cities across the globe. Hundreds attended the protest in Kelowna, most of whom were wearing masks. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Protesters gather in Kelowna’s Stuart Park on June 5, 2020, during a Black Lives Matter rally. The death of George Floyd under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer in late May sparked protests in cities across the globe. Hundreds attended the protest in Kelowna, most of whom were wearing masks. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

A man and a young boy stop their bikes at a red light at the intersection of a pedestrian-only Bernard Avenue and Water Street on June 29. A stretch of Bernard was closed to vehicle traffic from late June through September long weekend, allowing patios and pedestrians to take over the street. In November, Kelowna city council voted to have the road closure return on an annual basis. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

A man and a young boy stop their bikes at a red light at the intersection of a pedestrian-only Bernard Avenue and Water Street on June 29. A stretch of Bernard was closed to vehicle traffic from late June through September long weekend, allowing patios and pedestrians to take over the street. In November, Kelowna city council voted to have the road closure return on an annual basis. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Sam DiMaria, owner of Bella Rosa Orchard is pictured walking through apple rows at his farm on Sept. 22. The smokey September proved difficult for Okanagan fruit growers. The health of pickers was a concern for many farm owners, which slowed operations. This was compounded by a shortage of workers due to COVID-19 border restrictions. This was seen as the last straw for some growers in the region. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Sam DiMaria, owner of Bella Rosa Orchard is pictured walking through apple rows at his farm on Sept. 22. The smokey September proved difficult for Okanagan fruit growers. The health of pickers was a concern for many farm owners, which slowed operations. This was compounded by a shortage of workers due to COVID-19 border restrictions. This was seen as the last straw for some growers in the region. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Crews continue battling a fire at Rutland’s Olympia Greek Taverna that broke out late on the night of Oct. 6 on the morning of Oct. 7. The restaurant, which had been in the community for more than 50 years, was a total loss. Owners Mike and Chris Koutsantonis plan to rebuild, though how or when is still to be determined. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Crews continue battling a fire at Rutland’s Olympia Greek Taverna that broke out late on the night of Oct. 6 on the morning of Oct. 7. The restaurant, which had been in the community for more than 50 years, was a total loss. Owners Mike and Chris Koutsantonis plan to rebuild, though how or when is still to be determined. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

In October, residents of 44 mobile home units at Hiawatha RV Park in Kelowna were served an eviction notice, stating they had a few months to find new homes. Developer Westcorp plans on demolishing the homes come February 2021, and starting new. Some residents, who have been living there for years at an affordable rental rate, struggled to grapple with the reality of moving. Pictured above, resident Victoria Fox and her son stand outside their home at Hiawatha RV Park. Fox was outspoken about the upcoming move, saying there is little to no available affordable housing for them to transition into. She said some residents feared homelessness, come spring. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

In October, residents of 44 mobile home units at Hiawatha RV Park in Kelowna were served an eviction notice, stating they had a few months to find new homes. Developer Westcorp plans on demolishing the homes come February 2021, and starting new. Some residents, who have been living there for years at an affordable rental rate, struggled to grapple with the reality of moving. Pictured above, resident Victoria Fox and her son stand outside their home at Hiawatha RV Park. Fox was outspoken about the upcoming move, saying there is little to no available affordable housing for them to transition into. She said some residents feared homelessness, come spring. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Throughout 2020, COVID-19 disrupted even the most age-old traditions. In November, Remembrance Day played out differently. Instead of large crowds, there were virtual ceremonies. Pictured above, 94-year-old Kelowna veteran Dick Fletcher sits in his living room and reflects. He is one of the last remaining Second World War veterans in Kelowna. Despite never feeling the sting of a bullet or discomfort of the trenches, Fletcher was not spared the slow torture of war. Each November, he thinks of his many brothers, cousins and friends who never came home. After laying a wreath today at the Cenotaph on Nov. 11, he went home to spend the day in remembrance. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Throughout 2020, COVID-19 disrupted even the most age-old traditions. In November, Remembrance Day played out differently. Instead of large crowds, there were virtual ceremonies. Pictured above, 94-year-old Kelowna veteran Dick Fletcher sits in his living room and reflects. He is one of the last remaining Second World War veterans in Kelowna. Despite never feeling the sting of a bullet or discomfort of the trenches, Fletcher was not spared the slow torture of war. Each November, he thinks of his many brothers, cousins and friends who never came home. After laying a wreath today at the Cenotaph on Nov. 11, he went home to spend the day in remembrance. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

RCMP Superintendent Kara Triance is pictured on Nov. 11 kneeling at the Field of Crosses in Kelowna. Instead of large crowds on Remembrance Day, there were virtual ceremonies. The public stopped by City Park throughout the day to pay their respects. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

RCMP Superintendent Kara Triance is pictured on Nov. 11 kneeling at the Field of Crosses in Kelowna. Instead of large crowds on Remembrance Day, there were virtual ceremonies. The public stopped by City Park throughout the day to pay their respects. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

A man with a mask stands in front of the Tree of Hope shortly after its lighting on Nov. 26. This marked the start of the holiday season. The 120-foot-tall has approximately 25,000 LED energy-efficient bulbs and will be the symbol of celebration until Jan. 1. For the past 23 years, the Tree of Hope has stood as a tradition in Kelowna to help spread compassion for those less fortunate. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

A man with a mask stands in front of the Tree of Hope shortly after its lighting on Nov. 26. This marked the start of the holiday season. The 120-foot-tall has approximately 25,000 LED energy-efficient bulbs and will be the symbol of celebration until Jan. 1. For the past 23 years, the Tree of Hope has stood as a tradition in Kelowna to help spread compassion for those less fortunate. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Kelowna paramedic Jason Manuel is pictured on Nov. 30 climbing into an ambulance parked at Station 341. A fall surge in COVID-19 cases meant higher daily call volumes in some areas including Kelowna. Responding daily to positive COVID-19 cases, trying to perform well and communicate under layers of personal protective equipment, and dealing with slow turnarounds due to increased health precautions, caused an increase in anxiety for workers. This is compounded by the constant fear they will take the virus home to their families. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Kelowna paramedic Jason Manuel is pictured on Nov. 30 climbing into an ambulance parked at Station 341. A fall surge in COVID-19 cases meant higher daily call volumes in some areas including Kelowna. Responding daily to positive COVID-19 cases, trying to perform well and communicate under layers of personal protective equipment, and dealing with slow turnarounds due to increased health precautions, caused an increase in anxiety for workers. This is compounded by the constant fear they will take the virus home to their families. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Members of the Okanagan Valley’s Punjabi community gather in support of Indian farmers on Dec. 6. The protest — comprised of several local farmers of Indian heritage — is one of many that took place across Canada through November and December against new agricultural laws imposed in September by the Indian government. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Members of the Okanagan Valley’s Punjabi community gather in support of Indian farmers on Dec. 6. The protest — comprised of several local farmers of Indian heritage — is one of many that took place across Canada through November and December against new agricultural laws imposed in September by the Indian government. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Kelowna senior, 77-year-old Lance is pictured taking shelter from the rain. For years he has woken up every morning cold, shivering under layers of blankets, His shelter was his truck, but it was hardly a home. However thanks to the generosity of thousands of strangers, Lance found a way out. When Lance’s story was originally posted online, it touched the hearts of many. The donations of strangers have helped secure him a warm bed and roof over his head. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Kelowna senior, 77-year-old Lance is pictured taking shelter from the rain. For years he has woken up every morning cold, shivering under layers of blankets, His shelter was his truck, but it was hardly a home. However thanks to the generosity of thousands of strangers, Lance found a way out. When Lance’s story was originally posted online, it touched the hearts of many. The donations of strangers have helped secure him a warm bed and roof over his head. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

On Dec. 19 Kelowna Gospel Mission staff took to the streets to feet approx. 500. For those that don’t have much, a warm meal lovingly prepared by a stranger can go a long way. That night, they distributed about 400 meals to those on the streets. Some of their meals were also delivered to other shelters and supportive housing units around town. One of their first stops was a gravel parking lot on Baillie Avenue, where dozens of people eagerly accepted their gift. Each meal included turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, topped off with a slice of pie. For Gary Baker and Stephanie Hermiston, pictured above, who are currently experiencing homelessness in Kelowna, the meal meant a lot. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

On Dec. 19 Kelowna Gospel Mission staff took to the streets to feet approx. 500. For those that don’t have much, a warm meal lovingly prepared by a stranger can go a long way. That night, they distributed about 400 meals to those on the streets. Some of their meals were also delivered to other shelters and supportive housing units around town. One of their first stops was a gravel parking lot on Baillie Avenue, where dozens of people eagerly accepted their gift. Each meal included turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, topped off with a slice of pie. For Gary Baker and Stephanie Hermiston, pictured above, who are currently experiencing homelessness in Kelowna, the meal meant a lot. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

Photo Galleries

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

Just Posted

A second case of COVID-19 has been confirmed at Vernon’s BX Elementary School. (Kerry Hutter photo)
Second COVID case confirmed at Vernon elementary school

Exposure at BX Elementary happened April 6 and 7

Highway 97 being converted to four lanes in April 1990. This photo taken in Lake Country. (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives Photo #14025)
HISTORY: How the old Highway 97 in Lake Country got new name

Pelmewash Parkway recognizes the First Nations history in Lake Country

Salmon Arm Silverbacks defenceman Kieran Ruscheinski (right) sticks close to Vernon Vipers forward Logan Lorenz during Salmon Arm’s 2-1 overtime win in B.C. Hockey League pod play Saturday, April 10, at Kal Tire Place. (Lisa Mazurek - Vernon Vipers Photography)
Mack attack paces Salmon Arm Silverbacks past Vernon

Sullivan Mack scores both goals, including beautiful OT winner, in Gorillas’ 2-1 BCHL pod play win over Snakes

Paddlewheel Park off Okanagan Landing Road, Vernon. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Vernon council looks to address parking shortage at Paddlewheel Park

City staff are looking into short, medium and long-term overflow parking options

(GVMA)
WATCH: A Royal procession through Vernon, 1959

Prince Philip, who died April 9 at 99, visited Vernon on a tour of Canada in 1959

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

People walk past the Olympic rings in Whistler, B.C., Friday, May 15, 2020. Whistler which is a travel destination for tourists around the world is seeing the effects of travel bans due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Adults living, working in Whistler, B.C., eligible for COVID-19 vaccine on Monday

The move comes as the province deals with a rush of COVID-19 and variant cases in the community

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
UPDATE: RCMP investigating after child, 6, dies at motel in Duncan, B.C.

The BC Coroners Service is conducting its own investigation into the circumstances around the child’s death

RCMP display some of the fish seized from three suspects who pleaded guilty to violating the Fisheries Act in 2019, in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
3 banned from fishing, holding licences after overfishing violations near Vancouver Island

Mounties seized the group’s 30-foot fishing vessel and all equipment on board at the time

Flight with COVID
Another Kelowna flight with COVID-19 exposure

Westjet flight on April 5 from Kelowna to Edmonton

B.C. Premier John Horgan responds to questions during a postelection news conference in Vancouver, on Sunday, October 25, 2020. British Columbia’s opposition Liberals and Greens acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for Horgan’s government, but they say Monday’s throne speech must outline a coherent plan for the province’s economic, health, social and environmental future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s NDP to bring in throne speech in B.C., Opposition wants coherent plan

Farnworth said the budget will include details of government investment in communities and infrastructure

FILE - An arena worker removes the net from the ice after the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames NHL hockey game was postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test result, in Vancouver, British Columbia, in this Wednesday, March 31, 2021, file photo. As vaccinations ramp up past a pace of 3 million a day in the U.S, the NHL is in a tougher spot than the other three major North American professional sports leagues because seven of 31 teams are based on Canada. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP, File)
Vancouver Canucks scheduled to practice Sunday, resume games April 16 after COVID outbreak

Canucks outbreak delayed the team’s season by eight games

Most Read