We concluded our Western Sunsetters 2021 season with our last of three rallies for this past summer. Wood Lake RV Park and Marina, which is just north of Kelowna, BC, was an ideal spot for our final gathering.
Although we had 81 vans registered over the 8 months preceding the rally, we ended up with only 44 vans attending. This was still the largest gathering of LTVs at any of our Western Sunsetter rallies to date. Forest fires, COVID concerns, and personal circumstances caused 37 vans to cancel.
The eighty plus people in attendance filled their days with many activities. Many went bike riding on the numerous trails in the area. In fact, 25 bikers were led by Doug Murray on Wednesday on the Wood Lake Loop, a 17.5 km scenic ride around Wood Lake. On Thursday, smaller groups of bikers did various other routes, some up towards Vernon, BC, on the Kalamalka Trail, an almost 60 km ride.
On Wednesday we also had 12 of our registrants enjoy a full day of touring wineries in the region. Sip Happens Wine Tours handled all the details, with transportation and guides. From the looks of those returning in very good spirits and carrying a case of wine at day’s end, I have to conclude they had an excellent time.
On Thursday, 11 golfers went to Sunset Ranch Golf & Country Club. This was a beautiful course and the weather could not have been better. Thanks goes out to Cheryl Murray, who made the arrangements and acquired a substantial discount for us all on the green and cart fees.
Others spent their days, hiking, sightseeing, or relaxing on the beach or at their campsite.
Because our numbers were so large and restrictions were in place for maximum numbers of people who could gather, our happy hours and evenings were restricted to gatherings of ten to twenty people at a campsite or on the beach. Several of our campsites were right adjacent to the beach.
There was a small bakery called Two Donkeys Bakery right onsite and next to the campground office. With the sponsorship we received from Triple E, we were able to provide each coach with a $16 coupon to spend at the bakery. The delicious breakfast buns, lunch sandwiches, and numerous freshly baked items saw many of us spend well in excess of $16.
Fraserway RV from Kelowna was also very generous to our rally. They provided us with a $50 gift card for each coach that can be used at any Fraserway dealership in Canada. You may have recently received a notification from Leisure Travel Vans recognizing Fraserway RV in Kelowna as one of the top-rated Leisure Travel Vans dealerships in North America.
I want to close this report with a few thank yous. Thanks to Jeff Shardelow, who has been working with me since December of 2020 on organizing this rally. He did much of the ground work in the Wood Lake area. Thanks to Doug and Cheryl Murray, who organized the golfing and biking. The rally must have been a bitter sweet event for the Murrays, as they literally sold their LTV a day or two before the rally and were not able to attend, although Doug did drive up to our campground to lead Wednesday’s bike ride. Thanks to the businesses that worked with us: Sven, the owner of Two Donkey’s Bakery, Leah Hutton at Sip Happens Wine Tours, and the pro shop guys at Sunset Ranch Golf Club. They were all so easy to work with and adapted as circumstances and rules changed. Finally, thank you to Kathy Schmidt, the manager, whom I have worked with for the past 9 months, and all her staff at Wood Lake RV & Marina. They bent over backwards to accommodate us where they could and make our stay enjoyable.
Written by Norm Lavoy