Students that attend Okanagan College have an opportunity to explore and become part of the region in which they are attending. We have four campuses across the Okanagan region- Kelowna, Penticton, Vernon and Salmon Arm. Today, we would like to introduce you to the city of Penticton and its surroundings. Also, the city is an amazing location to experience nature, the summer season, and many recreation opportunities.
The Penticton Campus – Gateway to the South Okanagan
Students who attend the Penticton campus have an opportunity to experience Canada’s only natural desert. Just south of Penticton, in the town of Osoyoos is the Osoyoos Desert Centre, a 67-acre nature interpretive facility. Here, visitors can learn about desert ecology, habitat restoration and conservation of endangered ecosystems in the South Okanagan. So, take a walk along the raised 1.5 km boardwalk path and experience a living desert.
No trip to the South Okanagan would be complete without visiting Oliver, BC’s wine capital. From the US border to Penticton, visitors can experience hundreds of wineries, vineyards, orchards and farm gardens where much of BC’s fresh fruits and vegetables are grown. Take unique routes such as CorkScrew Drive and Bottle Neck Drive. Penticton is located between two lakes – Okanagan and Skaha which provide ample opportunities to enjoy the beaches and water activities.
The Penticton campus is home to the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence. This is the Greenest Post-Secondary Building in Canada – 2016 – one of the most sustainable buildings utilizing renewable energy and technology. Further, the campus is also home to the unique Sustainable Construction Management Technology Diploma. The campus is located in the centre of this unique beachside community very close to Apex Alpine Ski Resort.
Summertime in Penticton
During summer, the city hosts a weekly farmers market which provides the opportunity to enjoy local products including vegetables, fruits, eggs, honey, jams, baking, wines and spirits as well as hand-made crafts. Visitors to the market will be impressed as streets are closed and the unique shops overflow into the streets. The city is also home to Cherry Lane Shopping Mall.
For nearly seventy-five years, Penticton has hosted an annual five-day free family event called Peach Festival. The event features contests, films, a parade, tournaments, amusements, dance, music and concerts. So, this includes the Subaru Ironman Triathlon, one of the most difficult one-day sporting events in the world. This event provides an amazing opportunity to watch world-class athletes as they swim 3.86 km in the lake, then jump on a bike to ride over 180 km through orchards, vineyards and rolling hills and then run a full 42 km marathon. Previously, Okanagan College hosted one of the Japanese Ironman contestants as an international student on a study tour in 2019.
To capture a birds-eye view of the city of Penticton and the surrounding lakes, take a short drive towards the famous Naramata Bench, home to more than twenty wineries, and hike to the top of Munson Mountain.
Recreation Opportunities in Penticton
The campus hosts a number of recreation opportunities for students to enhance the quality of their student life experience. So, these free activities include yoga, community sports – volleyball, dodgeball, and Frisbee leagues, beach parties, hikes and nature walks (including Ikeda Japanese Garden). Also, a highlight for many students is going to the campus gym where they can get a personal trainer to design a program to help them achieve their fitness goals. Here, the personal trainers are students in the unique Penticton Campus Human Kinetics Diploma program.
Penticton is one of the most beautiful cities in the Okanagan region, complete with opportunities to experience nature, wineries, recreation and stunning views from the surrounding hills. From desert centers to the lakeside, farmers’ markets and numerous hiking/running trails, students can lead a full life here! Academics are not all that’s in store for students that head to the Penticton campus at Okanagan College.