Melissa (Missy) Dobernigg — cidermaker, marketer and distributor at BX Press Cidery and Orchard — stacks bottles of freshly made Lavender Raspberry cider Feb. 26. Lavender Rasberry is the cidery's summer offering as part of their botanical series that infuse B.C. fruits with complimentary botanicals for a clean, dry craft. (Parker Crook/Morning Star)

BX Press picked from the crop

Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards winners are...

The best of Greater Vernon’s business leaders were celebrated at the 2018 Business Excellence Awards at the Vernon Lodge on Friday night with BX Press Cidery winning the prestigious BDC Business of the Year Award.

“The businesses represented here tonight have had a long journey, from the beginning of the nomination process, to the judging and finally to the winners tonight,” said Markus Schrott, Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce president. “We congratulate all of the winners and acknowledge the many deserving nominees.”

PickleBall Depot won the new award, Innovator of the year (sponsored by Silver Star Mountain resort) while The Small Business of the Year Award (sponsored by Community Futures) went to One Step Footcare while Cobbler’s Rack and Shoe repairs was named as the New Business of the Year (sponsored by The Herbal Health Center).

The individual awards went to Byron Bolton of Kingfisher Boats who was named Business Person of the Year (sponsored by Kal Tire), the Community Leader Award (sponsored by MQN Architects and Interior Design) went to Lisa Anderson of the Vernon Upper Room Mission Society and Linda Heng of The Beauty Bar was named Young Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by Nixon Wenger LLP).

Other 2018 winners included:

• Employer of the Year sponsored by Telus: Caufields Engraving

• Green Business of the Year sponsored by Let’s Go Transportation: ROOST Solar

• Manufacturer of the Year sponsored by City of Vernon: BX Press Cidery

• Tourism Excellence sponsored by YLW Kelowna International Airport: Silver Star Mountain Resort

• Non-Profit Excellence sponsored by Lake City Casino Vernon: Bollywood Bang-GNSS

• Customer Service of the Year sponsored by Rellish Transport Services: The Crate Escape Dog Adventures

• People’s Choice sponsored by Total Restoration: North Okanagan Valley Gleaners

• Solopreneur of the Year sponsored by Okanagan Spring Brewery: She Devil Delights-Heather Bottoms

“Many of these organizations and individuals have contributed greatly to the well being of the community,” said Dione Chambers, chamber general manager. “It’s important that we celebrate that dedication to the community.”

Presented by Valley First, this year’s Awards Gala drew a crowd of close to 320 to recognize the top businesses and organizations in 15 different categories.

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