- Food & Drink
- Travel & Lifestyle
- Arts & Culture
- News & City Info
Hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of people crowded into Gyro Park today for Canada Day 2022 celebrations.
It was quite likely the busiest Gyro has been since Canada Day 2019. Get-togethers of any sort were prohibited in 2020 due to pandemic mandates, and Canada Day celebrations were severely muted -- and canceled in Penticton -- last year as the country came to grips with the residential schools tragedy.
But this year it was full steam ahead and the park looked busy even before the crowds showed up.
Taking over the event reins from the City for 2022 was the Downtown Penticton Business Improvement Association, and they planned big-time.
A gaggle of food trucks lined the south edge of the park and countless vendor and community group tents were situated across the eastern and northern flanks.
The skies were sunny as the schedule kicked off at 10 am with a performance by local singer-songwriter Chayce Kennedy, and continued that way to the early afternoon.
Threatening clouds loomed in the west as the afternoon wore on, but the thunderstorm many thought was coming never materialized.
In the noon hour, Penticton Indian Band member and Syilx Okanagan Nation representative Serenity Baptiste performed the Okanagan Song, the Penticton Concert Band performed the national anthem, and pipers led a parade of dignitaries onto the bandshell stage. Several short speeches followed.
Afternoon highlights included the always entertaining Ari Neufeld and the Bent Family of Indigenous dancers.
The latter prompted a hundred or more adults to jump onto the concrete dance floor in front of the stage and go crazy like the kids had been doing all day.
We can’t let the day go without mentioning the cupcakes. Some were iced in red frosting, some in white, and there was nearly 1,000 of them in total.
And all were handed out, many by contestants for the Miss Penticton 2022 crown, free of charge to ravenous event-goers.