• The Best Resource for Events in Kelowna, BC & the Okanagan and Your Source for LGBT2Q+ News


A Passion for Pets

Tail Blazers, a health food store for pets, has two locations in Kelowna. One in the Mission and one in Glenmore, both owned by a local Kelowna couple, John and Barton. Their mission statement is, “Pets add years to our lives, now it is time we add some time to theirs!”

How did Tail Blazers get started? With an 18-year-old Shih Tzu Pekinese and a 17-year-old Shih Tzu in their family, they began looking for healthier options for them. This quest ignited their passion for enriching pets’ lives.

Then opportunity struck. They had been shopping at Tail Blazers for a few years when the chance to purchase the store presented itself.

They jumped at it.

John and Barton had worked for other people for most of their lives. They knew at some point they wanted to own their own business. They just didn’t know what direction to go in.

Now with Tail Blazers, they could fulfill their passion.

John says, “When you enjoy what you are doing, it makes coming to work so much easier. Being able to transform a pet’s health has to be the best thing. We have new customers that come to us as a last resort. Their pet is not doing well, and they have tried everything, but through changing to a proper diet and some supplements, they can bring their beloved pet back to thriving.”

John’s advice for starting your own business.

“If you are looking to start your own business, follow your passion and what you love.  At first, it will be a lot of work and be a little stressful  but once all the dust settles it will be more rewarding than anything you have done before.”

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Tail Blazers has gone NO CONTACT. All orders are done via an online order form or over the phone. They offer curbside pickup or free delivery with purchases of $30 or more from West Bank to Lake Country.

For more information on how to continue supporting this business go to https://tailblazerskelowna.com/

Dorothy’s Drag Delivery Review

It’s been a while since I’ve done a MSRBL FGT food review (two years in fact) so I thought I’d give it a go even though I am in lockdown and haven’t eaten out in what seems like AGES.

This evening I ordered delivery. And not just any delivery. Pizza delivery. And not just any pizza delivery. Gay bar drag queen pizza delivery…

Read more…

Women Empowered – Volume 3

Lacing Up the Skates Again

A personal story by Laura Crossley.

I thought my hockey career was over when I (formally) came out as Transgender in 2018. I hadn’t played in years. Who would I now play for? I had played for a men’s team, while on feminizing hormones and nobody could tell I was secretly in transition starting in 2015. That’s what happens when you play with guys you have grown up with all your life.

So, when we decided to leave Alberta in late 2018 and head back home to BC, I knew I had to create a supportive community and sooner than later if possible.

After doing some homework, I posted on a few hockey sites under my female alias. I had not done the name change but knew it would be after the 3-month waiting period upon arrival in BC. I didn’t immediately want to scare away any potential teams by posting as Grant. As a result, I received a couple of emails in response.

I have always been open about being transgender. I do this with the esthetician, hair salon, laser hair removal, spot, makeup artist, doctor, dentist, etc. I have been criticized for this but, at the same time, people are allowed to make a living and not deal with people they may not like.

Back to hockey. I wrote an email explaining my situation on hormones, not fully transitioned yet, that I have played in the past etc. I didn’t mention, I am overweight but, I am not perfect.

Surprisingly, I got some replies back saying this would be totally fine. I wanted to ask again, and I think I did, but I wanted to make sure that it was a team decision. Even if one individual did not feel comfortable, then I would get that and respect it. They have that right, and really, they do have more of a right to be there than me.  Maybe I can be a little pragmatic but that’s how I feel.

I would rather be respectful in this manner because I know it’s a delicate issue.

After some back and forth, I got an email and phone call offering me one last opportunity. In the midst of a move, I wasn’t really thinking about hockey, but I took the opportunity. Now I was scared!

Waiting for that first meeting of the team was terrifying, filled with anxiety, but it went pretty well I think. Then a week later my first actual game. What dressing room do I use? The response was, “the same one as the rest of the team”. Okay, a little scary. I tried to position myself in a corner, somewhere away from everybody out of respect. I tried to get dressed and keep a low profile. It was wonderful but at the same time, hard.

Every game I am still full of anxiety, walking into that dressing room. I start thinking about comments that pop up during the game. And of course, I am active on social media and so I see how there are groups that specifically do not want transgender people on women’s sports teams.

Not only, do I have my own thoughts and anxiety, now I let others creep in and it’s incredibly hard. I have thought about quitting because maybe I am that fraud and imposter and invading a space?

Ultimately, the team is amazing and the players have been awesome. They’ve been so supportive and caring, but it is different than a men’s team, that’s for sure. The dressing room talk is a lot more subtle, the game is different, and the environment is still unfamiliar.

It certainly hasn’t been easy, but it’s worth it in the end.

Okanagan LGBTQ2SIA+ History: Telling Our Story

We need your help in uncovering the rich history of the LGBTQ2SIA+ community throughout the Okanagan Valley.

Once social distancing has subsided, we will be seeking expressions of interest from potential contributors to help tell this story through documents, photographs, and audio/visual materials in their care. These collected stories will be presented in a public exhibition jointly coordinated and curated by Donna Langille; Community Engagement Librarian at UBC Okanagan, and Taysha Jarrett; Coordinator of Kelowna Rainbow Women.

Here’s where you come in.

Whether you’re looking for a bit of a distraction–or perhaps an indoor activity–take a look around your home for books, papers, pictures, recordings, or anything else that relates to the LGBTQ2SIA+ community in the Okanagan Valley. 

Discover with pride, and if you have any questions about the items in your care, or the project in general, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at: donna.langille@ubc.ca

Have fun and happy digging!