North Okanagan shines with summer events, local vibes and soul


North Okanagan, BC — From the summit of SilverStar Mountain, BC, looking out onto the Okanagan valley, you can see a mountain village teeming with trail runners, mountain bikers, live music and a vibrant arts scene. Underlying it all, you can feel the pulsing beat of the drum. 

That’s just a snapshot of another summer of epic events in the North Okanagan. Sound over the top? That’s just the Okanagan scene, says Mayla Janzen

"We're definitely a little extra," says the organizer and cofounder of the Polson Market in Vernon, BC.

Attend events with the backdrop of the colourful SilverStar village.

Events here are infused with soul, thanks to the soulful people who give their time to enrich the local cultural scene of the North Okanagan. 

Get to know a handful of the north Okanagan's creative folks in this local community profile on our companion site, ZenSeekers, and then jump into the event list below to score your next adventure.

This summer’s North Okanagan event schedule is as juicy as an Okanagan peach, just waiting for you to sink your teeth in.

North Okanagan summer events

With warm days and a soul-infused local scene, the north Okanagan makes you feel at home and at the heart of it all. Check out some north Okanagan events this summer!

Kn Sqilxw Day, June 21, 2024

National Indigenous People’s Day started the summer in the Okanagan, and the Okanagan Indian Band celebrated with a special event, including a Sun Rise ceremony (5am), horse demonstrations, drumming, dance and food. All were welcomed to this grounding, Okangan season-opener.

Within your travels throughout the lands of the Okanagan, be sure to to take time to recognize and learn about the cultures who have inhabited these lands for centuries.

Polson Market, Fridays from May 17 - Sept 13, 2024

Every Friday night through the summer and fall, the outdoor Polson Market in Vernon is the kickstarter to your Okanagan weekend. Grab fresh local fruit, maybe a locally made t-shirt or handmade keepsake, fill up at the food trucks and enjoy live music.

Each week brings a new theme or special event, get all the details here

The Polson Night Market has different themes throughout the summer featuring a variety activities and performances.
Silver Star Summer Music Series by Destination Silver Star 
Saturdays from June 21 - Sept 14, 2024

Every Saturday for thirteen weeks, SilverStar Mountain Resort is host to live and touring music acts in its colourful mountain village. And you can check it out for free! Some of the headline artists include Jesse Roper, Vox Rea and The Boom Booms.

“We’re making really amazing, BC-based original music a focus for the series,” says producer Noah MacLeod, of local production company Local Losers Underground. “We wanted to celebrate awesome local music with a bit of a different flair, something out of the ordinary.”

At the heart of it, Local Losers came from the idea of creating inclusive spaces for people of all walks of life to enjoy art. You can get down at the shows any Saturday, just grab the listings here.

Photo: Chris Istace
Hit the trails for views of lakes, orchards, hillsides and more in the beautiful North Okanagan.
Trail running events with Bush Babes & Bros

To really experience the beauty of the Okanagan, you have got to get out on the trails. Check out Bush Babes & Bros for a full range of trail events, including their summer race series:

Soup2Nutz duathlon on July 6, 2024  gives you a dual sport race to test yourself on, with both running and biking. You can take on the 26km course (16km bike, 10km run) solo or as a team.

Brokenagan Backyard Ultra on July 20, 2024 takes you on a challenging course through Silver Star Provincial Park, winding through forest, past lakes and alpine blooms, along the nordic trails at Sovereign Nordic Centre.

If you’re not up to race yet but want to get started, check out their camps and clinics.

For a more laidback way to tackle the trails, check out the trail resources on the Monashee Trail Society for a leg stretcher between music, races, sips and fun. 

Photo: SilverStar Mountain Resort
Cool down with the mountain air and cool beverages during the Silver Star Beer & Cider Fest.
Silver Star Beer & Cider Fest, Sept 7, 2024

Back at the mountain, enjoy some BC-based brews as you browse the Polson Market, enjoy live music series and soak up the awesome mountain vibes, to kick off the harvest season. Check out our listing here.

Sundog Festival, Sept 20-21

Hot off their residency on the mountain at SilverStar, Noah MacLeod and the Local Losers team put their weight behind the Sundog Festival in Vernon. A spinoff from BC Culture Days, this event celebrates all things local art and culture.

“It all stems from the value of wanting to uplift local arts and culture,” says MacLeod.

The North Okanagan does that in a big way and it’s part of the reason that summer is such an appealing time to check out the scene. 

A look at the Sundog Festival of Arts & Culture in Vernon. Photo Credits to Sundog Festival

Sundog Festival, Sept 20-21, 2024
Sundog Festival, Sept 20-21, 2024
Sundog Festival, Sept 20-21, 2024
Sundog Festival, Sept 20-21, 2024

When you go

The north Okanagan is your home for summer events, arts, culture and outdoor adventure, "where sun meets soul."

Getting there:
From Vancouver 5h drive
From Calgary 6.5h drive

Once you're in Vernon, SilverStar Mountain Resort is a quick 30-minute drive up Silver Star Road. 

Where to stay
Stay in the mountain village, for alpine and stage-side access, with Destination Silver Star.
Stay in town, close to local beaches and lakes with Tourism Vernon.

Trails, bands and artisans—here's your introduction to five locals who help make this scene sing, as featured on our partner site,

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