September has arrived in full force and the last few weeks of summer are officially nearing their end, but that doesn’t mean Osoyoos is slowing down.
As a resort community, Osoyoos is a popular beach town in summer, however, as the days get shorter and the temperatures dip, it is no less attractive and there are plenty of activities and events coming up this September that you won’t want to miss.
Here are 9 of those must-do activities that you can enjoy in Osoyoos this month!
Take a Fall Hike or Cycle
Hike through the natural wonder of the Mount Kobau area or stroll the historical Irrigation Canal Walkway. Trek through the desert in the cool of the early morning, in search of unique plants, birds and wildlife.
Cycle down quiet back-country roads, winding past quaint farms and wineries. If you are a mountain biker, go for the adrenaline rush on one of our mountain trails — and if it is your first time on the desert trails, check out these tips for riding in the South Okanagan.
Attend the Osoyoos Pride Arts Festival
For the first time ever, Osoyoos will be the site of a September Pride Arts Festival! The event will be held down at Gyro Park and is being organized by the South Okanagan Similkameen Pride Society, in partnership with Wide Arts National Association (WANA).
The event is a celebration of 2SLGBTQIA+ community and will feature a pride march, live entertainment, food trucks, vendors and a beer garden!
The Pride Arts Festival will be held on Saturday, September 24.
More information on the festival can be found here.
Did you know that Osoyoos is one of the best places in Canada for observing our galaxy? This was determined by testing done to identify the possible site for the Queen Elizabeth Telescope, which would have been placed on Mt. Kobau, and house Canada’s National Observatory. It was an exceptional location because of the number of clear nights, the moderate climate and its location, which is at the crossroads of Highway 97 and Highway 3. Read more about the history here.
Besides Mt. Kobau, Anarchist Mountain offers dark skies with minimum light trespass from Osoyoos. The Town of Osoyoos has restrictions in place on upward-pointing lights and is encouraging the use of full cut-off lighting (i.e., lights that are shielded and point downwards rather than into the skies above). Oroville has in place very strong ordinances to support efforts to control light pollution.
Enjoy the Half Corked Marathon
This event has become one of the most highly anticipated events in Canada year after year — a race that is all about having fun.
The Half Corked Marathon brings racers and wine enthusiasts together — many of them donning ridiculous and wild costumes — and sends participants weaving along a 19km route through South Okanagan vineyards, offering samples of select local wines at one of the 20 winery stations on the way.
If you haven’t signed up for the event already — which is being held on Saturday, September 10 — it is too late to run as spots are sold out, however, being a spectator can be just as fun!
Head to the finish line and cheer on the participants as they complete the course, while also enjoying live entertainment, food trucks and wine tasting.
More information about the event can be found here.
Indulge in Lobster on the Beach
Don’t miss this unique culinary experience, eating lobster down at Gyro Beach.
The special event is being put on by the Rotary Club of Osoyoos and will provide participants with a fresh lobster meal and wine while sitting beachside.
The event will also include a live auction, silent auction, 50/50 raffle, music, dancing and a cash bar.
This is a ticketed event and more information can be found online here.
Walk in the Dark or Take in a Nature Talk at the Desert Centre
The South Okanagan desert is loaded with a wide variety of different wildlife species and the Osoyoos Desert Centre is offering you the chance to learn more about these animals and the surrounding environment.
Having already done Nature Talks on snakes, badgers, burrowing owls, spadefoots and climate change, the Osoyoos Desert Centre has one more session coming up: Name That Bat! — focused on teaching all about the numerous species of bats that inhabit the South Okanagan. This talk will be held on Sunday, September 11th at 11 a.m.
Another way to gain more insight into the wildlife here will be through the Desert Centre’s Walk in the Dark series. These guided tours will talk guests along the Centre’s boardwalk and showcase wildlife functioning in their natural environment after dark. The night walks will take place on September 15th and 20th, starting at 8 p.m.
Tour Fall Foliage
As September steams ahead, the leaves will start to change and the gorgeous seasonal splendour of Osoyoos will begin to show. The fall colours — and the awe-inspiring beauty that comes with them — will captivate any traveller who arrives in Osoyoos. British Columbia’s interior landscape of vineyards, orchards, forests, ranch country, and desert hills becomes a tapestry of colours, only seen at this time of year.
Our vineyards and orchards showcase vibrant oranges, crimson reds, and golden yellow hues across the entire valley. Take a drive down Black Sage Road, or stop at the Anarchist Mountain lookout on Highway 3 to take in the changing season from above!
Cheer on teams at the Dragon Boat Flag Race
The 3rd Osoyoos Lake Dragon Boat Flag Race is taking place Saturday, September 17th, 2022, at Legion Beach, Osoyoos. Although there are many dragon boat races across the country, this is the only event where teams not only have to cross the finish line, but also must be the first to successfully grab the flag.
Beginning at 9 a.m. 2 teams will race at a time in heats (250m) for fast-paced action. One team member at the front of the boat is the flag person, whose sole responsibility is to grab the flag as the boat reaches the finish line.
Spectators are encouraged to head to Legion Beach for the morning to take in the action and cheer on the teams!
Stomp Grapes at the Oliver Wine Festival Weekend
The final weekend of the month is going to be a jam-packed, can’t-miss festival full of activities.
The Oliver Wine Festival Weekend is a three-day event that will include a performance from The Trews, the Cask & Keg Festival, Amazing Oliver Race, Beer Olympics, Festival of the Grape and the ever-popular Grape Stomping Competition.
If you’ve ever wanted to jump in a barrel and crush grapes, while racing other teams in an effort to stomp the most grapes and win all the bragging rights, now is your chance. Registration for the Grape Stomp Competition — held at Nostalgia Wines — can be found online here.
Tickets to each of the other events are also available online here.