Summerland Economics, part 2. A fresh effort.

I have received many positive comments regarding the ideas I have been putting forward recently.  However, I have also received feedback that some of my efforts are being perceived as feisty or provocotive.

I do realize in hindsight that I should have gone about this in a better way.  This is all pretty new to me.

I understand that there are some who will just be outright opposed to my efforts no matter what I say or do, and there is nothing I can do about that.  But I also recogize I should have done better, and in that respect, I do apologize.

So, with hopes for a fresh start, here’s some ideas which are genuinely open to anyone who would like to try to make something positive happen in Summerland.  No strings attached, if you do think these have any merit, go ahead and make them happen, please!  And I offer to assist if I can.

1) Summerland Galaxy Garden at the Ornamental Gardens up at the Research Center.

This could become a major tourist attraction for Western Canada and is a very good fit for Summerland.  The world renowned artist responsible for the ONLY galaxy garden in the world, in his hometown in Hawaii, is aware of Summerland and eager to help.

The idea is that students participate with adults to draft, design and plant an actual community garden that is representative of the galaxy.  The interactive, hands on learning involves horticulture and astronomy.  Then, other students from out of area visit the gardens as part of school studies.  And tourists visit here to see the “Galaxy Gardens of Summerland”.  Could SADI be involved with the Friends of the Ornamental Gardens and share in “royalties”?  Yes.  A lead person would contact the “friends of the garden”, SADI and Mr Jon Lomberg to move this forward.  See websites for contact info.

2) Name the Highway
The newly upgraded 4 lane highway leads right to Summerland, along some of the most spectacular scenery of the Okanagan.  The Sea to Sky Highway is a well known marketing effort that simply put, celebrates the road to Whistler.  Similar marketing effort that, simply put, celebrates the road to Summerland.  A contest involving local merchants donating prizes to the best name would be promoted & celebrated.  The winning name could be announced by the media sensation “Rastah Blastah” who is famous for giving mouth to mouth to (don’t miss this part) Summerland’s Mountain Goat.  He saved the young goat from certain death by pulling it from a crevice when the road was being built.  Remember all the concern over the goats prior to construction?  Let’s celebrate THAT care and concern as part of the successful new highway coming to a rejuvinated small town!
Again, similar organizations would be contacted by the lead person.  Ministry of Highways has a timelapse presentation of the construction, SCEDT could help to coordinate and probably obtain some funding, SADI could participate with promotion, school district could most likely be a venue for the naming contest, KVSR could be interested coordinated support. Time Lapse of Highway construction:

3) With the closed up Summerland Nursery in mind, I read of the Dragon’s Den financial support for a business plan that uses the seedlings (that used to be grown in Summerland) as green corporate gift promotions rather than for bulk planting supply.  And the Dragon who invested is aware of and loves the Okanagan, so there could be potential there.  Could Summerland become the western supplier and also become the marketing arm for access to markets in the Pacific Rim?  This is GREEN business.

Those are 3 decent ideas put forward as real options to those who genuinely believe that Tourism is the major economic driver for Summerland prosperity.  I believe these are decent concepts and invite (not challenge) anyone to step forward to pursue leading them.

I believe Summerland needs to move forward, now.  I believe we need to find common ground, fast.  I commit to doing better on my part.

Thanks for giving this a read.

Patrick Murphy

RE/MAX Orchard Country

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