An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
KAMLOOPS WAS ON TV Sunday night. The town looked great.
It was one of those sappy Christmas movies that plague us this time of year. The title of this one was Destination Christmas, and we can be thankful the producers didn’t keep the rather disconcerting working title, Single and Ready to Jingle.
It was shot last March after all the snow had melted but there was plenty of fake snow and Christmas lights downtown and out at the Wildlife Park where filming took place.
Kamloops stood in for St. John, Alaska, the unintended destination of an up and coming toy company executive who lands there by mistake and falls for the local hunk who happens to be the town mayor and…. well, I won’t spoil it for you except to say it all works out.
My question is, why didn’t we know about the screening? When shooting was taking place, local media covered it, and there were one or two brief follow-ups but many likely missed it Sunday and if they did see it, might not have caught the Kamloops connection.
Where were the chamber of commerce, Tourism Kamloops, the film commission, the film society, the watch parties? There’s nothing more fun during the holiday season than a tacky flick that features our very own home town.
Many movies have been filmed around here, including some major Hollywood productions. We usually know about those thanks to effective publicity. I happened to see Destination Kamloops only due to somebody’s chance Facebook post.
Kamloops isn’t yet a Christmas season filming mecca — it appears nowhere on Top Sappy Christmas Movie Locations lists. But places like Hope, Burnaby, Whistler and Squamish do, none of which can hold a candle to the Tournament Capital and Thompson-Nicola as filming locations.
When we make it into the movies, it’s something to celebrate, and something we should know about. Fortunately, Destination Kamloops will air again this coming Sunday on this very channel.
I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.
Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops, former TNRD director and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a recipient of the Jack Webster Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.