Straight From DeHart - April 27, 2022

This week’s column is dedicated to long-time friend Stan Nisbet who passed on April 18th at the age of 90. Stan was also a great friend of the Ramada Hotel & Conference Centre where he held many business events over the years. Personal condolences to his family and many friends. 

After 12 years at 1180 Sunset Drive, Soul de Cuba Café has moved across the street into brand new larger premises on the main street level of One Water Street at 1169 Sunset Drive. The new restaurant boasts 565 additional square feet, high 26-foot ceilings, is bright, surrounded by large windows, has a kitchen four times the size of the former kitchen, offers 30 seats inside and a large patio. Owned and operated by Cesar Hernandez, Soul de Cuba serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Chris and I, along with businessman Andre Blanleil are partial to the Cuban scramble for breakfast. Favourites on the lunch menu are appetizers, hot pressed Cuban sandwiches, salads, soup, and lunch combinations. Dinner includes the most classic Cuban dish of Ropa Vieja, Picadillo a la Havana, red snapper fillet, Shrimps en Crema de Ajo and much more. There is a children’s menu and two wonderful desserts. You must try their famous Mojitos and tropical cocktails. Soul de Cuba Café offers music, live entertainment, and Karaoke on the weekends, including the popular Barbara Samuel Duo. You can check the entertainment on their Facebook and website.; Facebook @souldecuba.

After 27 years as the general manager of the Ramada Hotel & Conference Centre, Stan Martindale has retired. Stan started his career in the industry in 1982 when he took a temporary position as a bellman and janitor at the Capri Hotel. He worked his way up through various positions and then moved to the Ramada in 1995 as general manager. Over the years, Stan has held various positions on boards and committees in the industry including, Chair of Tourism Kelowna and President of the local Hotel Association. Stan contributed to various sub-committees and boards on Ramada Worldwide. In retirement, he is helping on the family farm and vineyard and hoping to spend more time with kids, grandkids and of course, in his shop and golf. I really get the part about working in his shop, as Stan is a fantastic carpenter and woodworker and made me the most beautiful charcuterie board. Golf, I would say, not so much, as I have golfed with him several times. Maybe lessons? Seriously, Stan and I worked together for so many years and he will be missed by myself and the team at the Ramada. Jennifer Stier is the new general manager of the Ramada formerly with the Hampton Inn and Suites.

Michaelbrook Golf & Brookside Grill are celebrating their first anniversary in business. Purchased last year by brothers Norm and Neil Parent and their niece Nadean Ostrom, the new owners have made many great changes and renovations to the popular 18-hole golf course and restaurant. The restaurant has been completely repainted, boasts new TVs, a new sound system, enhanced decorating and new high-top tables added to the bar area. Chef Sandy Spencer has added new menu items, one being the lamb burger which I sampled that was delicious. Chef Spencer won an award for this burger at the Victoria food show. Michaelbrook has added a garden to the back of the property which enables Chef Spencer to bring many items fresh farm-to-table. The patio outside the restaurant in front of the pro-shop has been completely renovated and a new permanent patio with more seating is now being constructed. With this new patio, there will be more seating outside than inside. Restaurant hours are Sunday and Wednesday from 11:30 to 5:00 p.m. and all other days from 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. The golf course now offers multi-game passes for 10, 20 or 30 rounds for 9 or 18 holes. You can save from 10-15% depending on what game pass you purchase. Bob Brown, formerly with Sunset Ranch Golf Course is the new superintendent at Michaelbrook. Check their website for events each month in the restaurant. Happy belated 50th to Nadean Ostrom on April 8th.  

Central Okanagan Heritage Society (COHS) hosted their AGM with all their existing directors re-elected except for Secretary Carol Millar who is leaving them after many years of volunteer service. Carol was the leader of Heritage Week and the Heritage Awards activities each year. Executives are Don Knox, President; Cheryl Spelliscy, Vice President and Wayne Bridges, Treasurer. Directors are Janessa Rush, Tara Hurley, Mary Brown-Clayton, Margot Pridham, Dave Elliot, Ernie Parks, and Ron SmithMary Brown-Clayton is leading in the renewal of the gardens at Benvoulin Heritage Church Park. 2022 has been declared, The Year of the Garden and COHS is one of many participants across Canada. 2022 is also the 40th Anniversary of the Central Okanagan Heritage Society and the 130th anniversary of the Benvoulin Heritage Church. The society was founded in 1982 to save the unused and derelict Benvoulin Church after the local fire department was planning to use it for fire practice. Jim Burkinshaw, CPA CGA MBA is the managing director of the society. 

Kelowna Friends of the Library will be hosting a book sale on May 1st from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at #114 – 2476 Westlake Road, West Kelowna. Books for all ages, with fresh stock for each sale. Cash only. 

UBC Faculty of Medicine is celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Southern Medical Program (SMP) at UBC Okanagan. The SMP has graduated more than 215 doctors and is also one of four sites within UBC’s broader distributed medical education program, which is training the next generation of medical students and resident doctors around the province. Every year, SMP welcomes 32 new medical students, of which up to10 seats are designed for applicants with rural and remote backgrounds, with 130 medical students and more than 90 resident doctors training at hospitals, primary care, and health care clinical settings across the Interior Health region. Dr. Roger Wong is the Vice Dean of Education in UBC’s Faculty of Medicine. 

Congratulations to Heather McLellan, MEd, BN, RN, CEN, CFRN, FAASTN, Associate Professor, Advanced Studies in Critical Care Nursing, Mount Royal University, who is the only Canadian who was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Air and Surface Transport Nurses. The Fellowship in the Academy of Air & Surface Transport Nurses (ASTNA) program is among ASTNA’s highest honours, recognizing individuals who have made a significant impact on the critical care transport industry through exemplary volunteer service and leadership, extraordinary accomplishments, or other major contributions to ASTNA and the transport industry. Heather is the daughter of locals, Tom and Sharon Lightfoot

The Okanagan Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) serves to advance philanthropy by enabling people and organizations to practice effective and ethical fundraising. AFP Okanagan is your link to professional networking, roundtable sessions, educational programs, and mentorship for all levels of fundraising. They also host an annual National Philanthropy Day Luncheon to celebrate philanthropy and the positive impact giving, volunteering, and charitable engagement have in the Okanagan. The event is May 19th from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Innovation Centre with a full day of learning, discussion and collaboration featuring keynote speaker Vu Le, a panel discussion with business leaders, funders and non-profits and Okanagan Café small group discussions in the afternoon. To register 

Waisted Efforts is a fashion show illustrating the history of women’s clothing in the 20th Century, on Sunday, May 15th at the Coast Capri Hotel at 12:30 p.m. with an afternoon tea. Narrated by fashion historian Ivan Sayers, the event is a fundraiser for the Canadian Federation of University Women Kelowna (CFUW Kelowna) for scholarships and bursaries. Tickets are $80.00 available at Strut Footwear & Apparel, His & Hers Ladies Fashions, or e-transfer 

The 2022 Habitat Fore Humanity Golf Raffle has launched. Tickets are 3 for $20.00 or one for $10.00 and can be purchased online at or at any of their four ReStores. There are fabulous prizes, and the first prize is one round of golf for four with a power cart at Predator Ridge, $200.00 dining credit, a one-hour private lesson for four with Dick Zokol, two complimentary rooms for a one night stay at Sparkling Hill Resort with a total value of $2,700.00. 

Birthdays of the week – Chuck Dixon (Apr. 27); Phyllis Litz & Con Litz, husband & wife (Apr. 27) Raghwa Gopal (Apr. 27); Lois Serwa (Apr. 27); Ron Labossiere (Apr. 28); Linda Verna (Apr. 28); Richard Erickson (Apr. 28); Shannon Stone (Apr. 28); Brett Kryskow (Apr. 29); Lynn Tamaki (Apr. 29); Alison Love (Apr. 29); Dave McLean (Apr. 29); Bryan Sargeant (Apr. 30); Tony Peyton (Apr. 30); John McCormack (Apr. 30); Sam Hill (May 1); Becky Marks (May 1); Bev Vassos (May 1); Harry Grossmith (May 1); Janice Appleton (May 2); Lynda Norman (May 2); Dale Adamoski (May 3); Keven Bojda (May. 3); Ric Lazare (May 3); Gloria Jean Seymour (May 3).         
Maxine DeHart is a Kelowna City Councillor and local hotelier. Phone her at 250-979-4546 or 250-862-7662; E-mail and web-site