Osoyoos Desert Centre cuts ceremonial ribbon for new boardwalk
A little rain and wind didn’t stop a ceremony to officially open the new 1.5-km boardwalk at the Osoyoos Desert Centre on Thursday, April 21 – the day before Earth Day.
The centre opens for visitors this Saturday, April 23.
Cutting the ceremonial ribbon were Boundary-Similkameen MLA Roly Russell and Lee McFadyen, president of the Osoyoos Desert Society.
The walkway was built over the winter by Osoyoos-based C3 Industries, and because of environmental sensitivity, pieces of the old, wooden boardwalk had to be flown out by a helicopter, which also brought in new materials.
C3 Industries completed the work in early April, only slightly later than their target date, despite a colder winter than usual, which shut down work during part of the winter.
The project received funding from the a provincial government program intended to help communities to upgrade tourism infrastructure in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Desert Centre draws an average of roughly 10,000 visitors each year from Canada and around the world.
In addition to Russell, MP Richard Cannings and Mayor Sue McKortoff also attended, as did staff from C3 Industries and volunteers and supporters of the Desert Centre.
Rain began falling as the speeches continued and guests clutched the canopies to stop them flapping in the wind, before moving to shelter to sip wine and nibble on cheese.
A “high point” of the ceremony was a couple of flyovers by migrating sandhill cranes, which flew below the dark clouds.
The Desert Centre introduces visitors to the unique plants and animals that live in this arid environment notable for its rare antelope brush.
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