Teresa Powell, Colin Powell, Barry Watson and Ken Last of Marketplace IGA with the award for business of the year handed out Saturday by the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce at its Business Excellence Awards gala.

Marketplace IGA named Penticton business of the year

Leaders in 13 categories honoured at 27th annual Business Excellence Awards

Penticton’s business of the year award is now in stock at Marketplace IGA.

The locally owned grocery store rang in the honour Saturday when the Penticton and Wine Country Chamber of Commerce handed out its Business Excellence Awards.

”I’m very, very proud and honoured to be able to serve our community of Penticton for over 50 years and to accept this with some long-term employees,” Marketplace IGA owner Colin Powell said after picking up the award.

“I really feel it’s important for business leaders in our community to support it and to lead our community,” he continued.

“My staff is (going to be) very, very proud of this award.”

A total of 13 awards were handed out at the 27th annual gala event, sponsored by Britco LP and hosted by the Penticton Lakeside Resort.

The chamber’s general manager, John Devitt, said 250 tickets were quickly snatched up for the evening, as were an extra 70 that were made available, making it the first sell-out in recent memory.

“Business (owners) in our community are often the unsung heroes. All they have to do is go to work everyday and make enough just to pay their bills and feed their families, but so many of our businesses go far beyond that basic level of service, so this is an opportunity to recognize their efforts,” Devitt said.

“They’re there supporting our sports teams and bringing creative ideas for more business, so it’s just really great to be able to recognize those efforts.”

The Bench Artisan Food Market got the nod for workplace culture excellence.

Owner Stewart Glynes, who purchased the business with his wife, Heather, in September 2013, said they don’t have any special perks for employees, but simply try to maintain a fun, welcoming place for staff and customers.

“I’d say the food and the environment and the coffee is what really makes them happy,” said Stewart, who was the head chef at The Bench for four years prior to becoming the owner.

“Our staff is obviously extremely important and making sure they’re happy helps with keeping all of our customers happy.”

The award for community support excellence went to Dennis Walker, the host and owner of SOCountry.ca Internet Radio.

“It means a lot,” Walker said.

“What I first learned when I started in radio was don’t just talk about events; go to them and be visible. So that’s what I did.”

The other winners were:

— Industrial and manufacturing excellence: Britco LP

— Retail excellence: Elliott Row Men’s Wear

— Agriculture and agribusiness excellence: Matheson Creek Farm

— Home-based business: Hair of the Dog Grooming Salon

— Family friendly excellence: Penticton Vees Jr. A Hockey Club

— Sustainability excellence: Ritchie Custom Homes

— Professional service excellence: Community Futures Okanagan Similkameen

— Hospitality/tourism excellence: All She Wrote Consulting

— New business excellence: Cowork Penticton

— Business leader of the year: Campbell Watt



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