Susan and Kim MacMillan and Ann Skelhorne are busy preparing to bring a stage adaptation of The Secret Garden, based on the book by Frances Hodgson Burnett, to the Shuswap Theatre stage. (Barb Brouwer photo)

Susan and Kim MacMillan and Ann Skelhorne are busy preparing to bring a stage adaptation of The Secret Garden, based on the book by Frances Hodgson Burnett, to the Shuswap Theatre stage. (Barb Brouwer photo)

Year in Review: The Shuswap Market looks back at headlines from September 2022

  • Jan. 1, 2023 12:00 p.m.


• A North Shuswap farm was recognized through B.C.’s Century Farm Award program. The Riley-Gillis family of Hungry Rock Farm in Celista was honoured for its more than 100- year commitment to B.C. agriculture, food and the local economy. “Farming is a difficult job that involves early mornings, late evenings and a commitment to producing high-quality food for British Columbians. It’s impressive to see this commitment at Hungry Rock Farm,” said Lana Popham, B.C.’s Minister of Agriculture and Food. “Congratulations to the Riley-Gillis family on this achievement and best wishes as your farm continues to grow in Celista.”

South Shuswap First Responders were in urgent need of new recruits. At this time, only eight responders delivered service to 51,366 residents (2016 census) in Area C of the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, a region that is 601 square kilometres in size. “We have eight responders available when they’re not working, on holidays or whatever,” said South Shuswap First Responders spokesperson Debbie Edwards. “That usually means we have two in the whole area, maybe.” Anyone who is interested in keeping this critical group alive may send an email to

Members of the Celebrate Shuswap Society are dedicated to bringing great entertainment to the Shuswap through a series of dances and concerts at Song Sparrow Hall. “We’re modelling it after the Vernon Jazz Club, which hosts events once a month with very large, live bands, and not just jazz,” said board member Jim Cooperman, who is responsible for booking the entertainment. “Now that we have our own wonderful hall, we’re trying to replicate that scenario.” The debut dance party took place on Sept. 24 with The Legendary Lake Monsters.

In its 45-year history, Shuswap Theatre has seen it all; and not only on the stage. In 1977, Jack Alouf, recreation director for the District of Salmon Arm, and James Bowlby, a drama teacher at J.L. Jackson Junior secondary, held a meeting to gauge community interest in theatre arts. Susan MacMillan was at that first meeting and said to everyone’s surprise, 24 people showed up. “It started right from there; we did three one-act plays just for friends and family in the log building that was a youth centre at the time,” she said.In January 1978, the group moved into the old Jackson School gym where they performed two productions – Beware of the Dog, followed by Fiddler on the Roof in 1979.The production convinced members of the Shuswap Theatre Society that they needed their own space, which they found in the former Tappen Women’s Institute and a supper club then located at Tappen Co-op. The society rented the space for two years, putting on six productions each year. “It was a step up from the school gym, but with low ceilings and no off-stage space, it was not best place for a theatre,” said Kim MacMillan. A search for a building the society could buy led to the present site on Hudson Avenue.

• A taxidermist was found to be responsible for dozens of bear paws left on a North Shuswap forest road. The BC Conservation Officer Service (COS) announced Thursday, Sept. 15, that it had completed its investigation into the disposal of wildlife parts, including numerous skinned bear paws, found near Anglemont in May 2021. The COS said the person responsible had been cooperative in the investigation and, in lieu of a $115 littering fine under the Environmental Management Act, had made a donation far exceeding that total to the Little Shuswap Lake Band’s Watershed Stewardship Guardian Program, as the offence occurred in the band’s territory.
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ShuswapYear in Review