Penticton provides a great lifestyle for the busy family with active kids, and the small community vibe can be enjoyed with assistance from friends and family in transportation to and from kids activities, which can make each week packed, no matter the season. Having raised two active children in Penticton, I have come to know many families who are able to provide assistance with “family taxi service.”
The small town community provides all parents the comfort of knowing your kids are safe. Having active kids in structured sports and the arts can open many doors to new friendships. After school activities are endless from dance, karate, gymnastics, swimming, skating, theatre, music lessons, skiing, biking or just casual family fun by visiting Loco Landing (also a great place for teen summer jobs), attending a movie at Penticton Landmark, going bowling or enjoying a hike on the KVR and the beach strolls.
When the children are young many facilities provide day services and seasonal camps during holidays that you can participate in on a drop in basis, like the local Community Centre swimming pool, Penticton Public Library, Fit Kidz Gymnastics, and the Hoodoo Adventures indoor climbing facility all have a form of child minding or parent and child activity. If you are looking for a splash of coffee and a place to meet young families at a slightly slower pace, try Time Flies Indoor Play Cafe.
The best part of living in Penticton is the plethora of festivals and events that are family friendly in the summer or winter months. Some of my favourites are the Penticton Peach Festival, Kiwanis Music Festival, Axel Merckx Granfondo, the Downtown Penticton Santa Claus Parade, and many more listed on the Visit Penticton website. With all of the festivals in town it provides an opportunity to encourage older children to assist and volunteer in some way that allows the children to give back and encourage community spirit. Many local clubs such as the Pikes or Kisu Swim Clubs, Penticton BMX club will take on an aid station for some of the big the sporting events. If you are looking for family fun activities on a winter evening, take in a Vees game, or a trip up to Apex Mountain Resort for skiing or tubing, and Nickel Plate has some great cross country and snowshoeing trails. Summer time has an endless amount of actives with our two beautiful lakes, Skaha and Okanagan, in our backyard.
Kids — and their parents — can also get involved with the arts at Okanagan Dance Studios, programs at the historic Shatford Centre, with the Penticton Arts Council, at the Penticton Art Gallery during their after school and summer programs, and at the Penticton Academy of Music.
My own kids and I have been involved in more than a dozen programs, and there’s always something to keep them, and me, busy.
This article was written by Lisa Baadsvik.