We recently wrote an open letter to the City of Kelowna, expressing our concerns over the lack of funding for the arts. Our region is booming, and our cultural opportunities need to blossom at the same rate. A strong commitment to the arts will help to sustain the heartbeat of our incredible Okanagan.

Read our impassioned plea, below, or listen to CBC Daybreak South‘s Chris Walker interview our president, Myles Bruckal, here:



Dear Mayor and Council,

The City recently received from the BC government a windfall grant of $26.8-million, a share of the provincial budget surplus that is to be spent on capital investments to promote growth. We enthusiastically welcome this restoration of public funds to the people who pay the taxes.

However, we were alarmed to learn that Kelowna city staff are recommending that the funds be allocated principally to items that are already in the budget. Moreover, the spending plan appears to encompass certain operating costs, even though the province’s intention was to support capital projects.

While funds appear to be earmarked for transportation, civil services and sports, we are profoundly disturbed to see that not a red cent is being directed towards the arts or, in particular, a new Performing Arts Centre.

We strongly believe that this is yet another missed opportunity.The City has repeatedly told us to “show us the money”; the provincial grant is just the kind of “found money” that would enable us to kickstart the process of building a badly-needed performing arts venue for our vibrant and growing community.

We strongly encourage Council to ensure that a portion of these funds be directed to a project that will greatly enrich the lives of the people of the Central Okanagan, now and long into the future.

Yours sincerely,

Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre

For more information on Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre, please contact us at [email protected]