Tourism hotspots in the Okanagan navigating COVID-19 scares | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Tourism hotspots in the Okanagan navigating COVID-19 scares

Beautiful Quails' Gate Estate Winery
July 19, 2020 - 6:00 PM

More Okanagan tourism hotspots are navigating a COVID-19 scare.

Quails Gate winery in West Kelowna announced this weekend that  Interior Health Authority advised staff that someone who tested positive visited the wine shop at Quails’ Gate on July 7.

“They have further advised and assured us there is no significant risk to the public or our staff given our precautionary protocols in place and do not recommend testing or self-isolation,” reads the notice to customers from Tony Stewart, Proprietor & CEO – Quails’ Gate Winery.

At Quails Gate, we have been operating at a level higher than that mandated by BCCDC & Interior Health, and will continue to do so.  Some of these protocols include socially distanced markers, plexiglass barriers at tasting stations and transaction points, masks for all team members, on-line ordering and curbside pick-up and collection of visitor names to assist with contact tracing if required.

Staff with symptoms are also requested to stay home, notify their supervisor, and be tested.

The same situation has rolled out at other locations across the valley this weekend.

Rustic Reel released a statement saying that multiple staff members having been to establishments with confirmed COVID19 cases, they’ve decided to close our doors while all of their staff get tested.

“We take the health of our guests and staff very seriously. We plan to re-open on Wednesday after we receive our results back and can ensure the safety of everyone,” read their statement.

Similarly, the Train Station pub is taking actions out of an abundance of caution.

“Your safety alongside our staff (members') is our number one importance. Until further notice, we have taken steps by temporarily reducing our hours of operation to 10 a.m.-10 p.m. every day,” they said in their social media.


Poplar Grove in the South Okanagan said in a media release issued July 17, a restaurant employee at the winery tested positive for COVID-19.

The individual showed no symptoms and wore a mask and gloves while at work.

They also shut down the restaurant and tasting room immediately upon receiving the news.


As of Friday, there were 235 positive COVID-19 tests in the Interior Health region and 35 associated with the community exposure in Kelowna around Canada Day on July 1, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said in a media briefing July 17.

Dr. Henry said at that meeting she expected the number infected in Kelowna would increase in the coming days.

It is taking five to seven days for infected people to show symptoms, which means the area is now in its third generation of exposure from that weekend.
Infections are largely amongst young people in the 20- to 30-year age groups, where they may not notice mild symptoms.

“The parties in Kelowna were done mostly with the right intent,” Dr. Henry said. “They were small parties but with different people every night.”

That’s why it’s essential, she said, to keep track of people who attend such gatherings and to closely monitor for any symptoms.

Overall in B.C., there were 28 new COVID-19 positive tests in the last 24 hours, bringing the provincial total to 3,198.


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