Special to the Chronicle
After a decade in the South Okanagan, the Half Corked Marathon is back for its tenth year.
From May 25-27, the event returns to the vineyards of Oliver and Osoyoos after being awarded Canada’s Event of the Year at the Canadian Tourism Awards.
The sold-out event saw over 6,000 people applying for 1,100 spots in the November lottery but for those that missed out on tickets, there are still many ways to enjoy the festivities.
Celebrations begin on May 25 with the Primavera Dinner ($90), catered by the renowned Joy Road Catering. Paired with wines from Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association members, guests can enjoy delicious family-style pastas and salads at this picturesque long-table dinner, tucked between rows of budding grapevines at Oliver Twist Estate Winery.
On May 26 cheer on the 1,100 runners taking part in the scenic 18km Half Corked Marathon, along a route that weaves through the vineyards of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country. Toast the participants with a celebratory glass of wine at the Party at the Finish Line (free entry, $23 for a wine tasting package including souvenir glass and five tasting tokens), where Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association wineries will be on hand offering wine tastings as guests enjoy live music and some of British Columbia’s best food trucks for an afternoon of fun with the family.
In celebration of the event’s 10th anniversary, intimate Winemaker Dinners in the Park ($110) offer an exclusive dining experience alongside winemakers and proprietors of some of the region’s leading wineries, including La Casa Bianca, Intersection Estate Winery, Tinhorn Creek Vineyards, Nk’Mip Cellars, River Stone Estate Winery, Maverick Estate Winery, Desert Hills Estate Winery and Check Mate Artisanal Winery. Held on the evening of May 26th in Oliver Community Park and catered by Chef Derek Ulhemann of Piggy’s BBQ and Vagabond Kitchen, tickets are limited to only 60 guests.
Alternatively, enjoy wine and delicious food at Road13 Vineyard’s Recovery BBQ ($40) and enjoy fresh wood-fired pizza from Wine Crush Pizza Wagon. Or head to Tinhorn Creek Vineyard’s natural vineyard amphitheater to see Terence Jack, part of the winery’s Canadian Concert Series ($35).
The following morning, return to Oliver Twist Estate Winery for a delicious Pancake Breakfast among the vines, with all funds raised going to the NICU at the Kelowna General Hospital (by donation).
For more information on all events, visit the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association website: http://www.oliverosoyoos.com/Events.