EDITORIAL – Let’s not compete with Kelowna for most reckless city

The river is no place to be.

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

ARE WE KAMLOOPSIANS now determined to prove we can be more foolhardy than Kelowna when it comes to COVID-19?

The Okanagan city that has played such a large part in ballooning the B.C. curve is now the subject of a warning from Interior Health that patrons of a strip joint may have been exposed to the virus.

This, after the exposures centred on the Canada Day weekend almost a month ago.

Now, there’s this thing about the South Thompson River float here at home.

Somebody posted the event on Facebook, setting a date for a group float down the river, with social distancing, of course.

Just how they’d accomplish that remains to be seen, or, hopefully not. I say hopefully not because the best thing to do with this event is cancel it, and removal of the Facebook post is a good sign. Maybe it was all a hoax.

How do you cram a bunch of cars and people into the Valleyview boat launch area and maintain social distancing?

The answer is, you don’t. The event has all the earmarks of a pandemic disaster, aside from the dangers on the river.

Why was it even being considered? It would break the 50-person maximum, for one thing.

Kelowna has proven how hard it is to avoid spreading the virus when a large number of people get together.

COVID-19 has become boring. I get it. More accurately, it’s a pain in the butt. There was a certain sense of adventure back in the early days, when we were all hoarding toilet paper and isolating ourselves at home.

The charm has worn off. We want to get back to the way things were before we had to endure daily briefings about new cases and deaths. But we simply can’t let our guard down.

Kelowna is proof of that. Let’s not compete with them for the title of most reckless city.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC, publishes the opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (8481 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on EDITORIAL – Let’s not compete with Kelowna for most reckless city

  1. Sean McGuinness // July 30, 2020 at 10:15 PM // Reply

    Hopefully, the masks stayed on during the strip tease.

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