Kamloops at 200: Your History
Falling for terrific weather and small-town atmosphere
It was November 1962 and we were living in Lethbridge, Alta.
Rogers Pass had recently opened and my husband, Rod, was asked to open two offices — in Kamloops and Nelson — for the rental firm he worked for.
We hadn’t even heard of Kamloops, but the job opportunity was worth the move. We rented a house on McGowan Avenue with our two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Nancy, and our six-week-old son, Craig.
Two more children joined our family — Janet and Brent — and both were born at Royal Inland Hospital.
It took a while to adjust to the extremely hot summers and little rain.
We soon fell in love with the terrific weather, small-town atmosphere, fabulous scenery and friendly people.
The population was about 20,000 and there was no Batchelor Heights, Juniper Ridge, Aberdeen, Upper Sahali, Aberdeen Mall, Thompson Rivers University or Summit Drive bypass. All traffic used Columbia Street.
There were two drive-in movie theatres (North Kamloops and Valleyview), lots of apple orchards, truck farms, asparagus fields and hop farms.
The Bay and Woodward’s were our department stores and both were located downtown. Most shopping was found on Victoria Street.
We have purchased three homes throughout the years — Brocklehurst, Barnhartvale and our current home in Juniper Ridge, where we have lived for 28.5 years.
It has been fun and interesting to watch the city grow and the population expand over the years.
— Rod and Sheila Astle
Canada Games instilled love, pride in city
As a teenager, in the summer of 1966, I was living in the Merritt area, on the family’s cattle ranch.
I was hired as a telephone operator by the British Columbia Telephone Company in Kamloops.
My heart was in the Nicola Valley and I missed my family.
Kamloops just happened to be where my job was.
I really didn’t like the big city.
Later, I met my future husband, bought a home and children came along.
I was too busy to notice any strong feelings for Kamloops and many years went by.
The City of Kamloops had a bid in for the 1993 Canada Summer Games.
The day the judges came to tour our city was very exciting and changed everything for me.
I recognized a strong love and pride in Kamloops that has stayed with me to this day.
— Judy Haynes