Anne Stewart grew up in restaurants and with a love of lakeside living.
Anne and her father, Campbell Stewart, are combining their passions with the purchase of their second lakeside pub, the former Blue Heron, which they have re-opened as the Outboard Waterfront Pub.
“Our family is very boaty. We love the lake, we lived on a sailboat once, we windsurf and spent a lot of time on the lake growing up,” said Anne Stewart.
Raised in Terrace, where her dad owned two A&W restaurants, she worked in the business from an early age.
Her father sold the A&Ws in Terrace and Kitimat and three years ago, the father/daughter team purchased their first waterfront pub, Turtle Bay Pub, in Lake Country.
The Outboard opened May 2 with new exterior and interior paint, decor and menu, and they even brought their head chef from Turtle Bay, Brett Thompson, to lead the team at the Outboard.
To tie in with the name, they have been collecting vintage outboard motors, which are displayed throughout the pub, including one motor from the First World War.
Another big change is the transformation of the banquet room into an ice cream parlour for July and August.
“It will be an ice cream parlour for the summer months and then after that, we will take out the freezers and use the room for Christmas parties and banquets,” said Stewart.
She is excited to have boaters on Okanagan Lake utilize the 12-boat slips they have available for lunch, dinner or even an ice cream break for the entire family.
The Outboard, unlike the previous establishment, will be open all year round.
“We want to become a neighborhood pub, we know that the place has been very seasonal and very tourist-focused for the last five years and we really want to appeal to locals,” said Stewart.
“We want people to come here and feel like it’s their pub and that their feedback is valued, and to feel welcome.”
Even though the family owns two waterfront pubs, Stewart doesn’t want people to think the Outboard is Turtle Bay’s twin.
She explains that the feel of the two pubs is completely different and that their separate menus reflect that.
“It isn’t your Irish-style pub. It has more of a Baja California feel and we wanted the menu to reflect that,” she said.
“We have food on our menu that will drive local traffic, that is not just summertime-focused, but we will keep things fresh for the wintertime as well.”
Now that the grand opening is over, the long-term planning for the business begins for Stewart and her dad.
To keep things interesting they will bring in live music and hold special events year-round.
They are also immersing themselves in the community by joining the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce.
“We are really excited about this pub, we fell in love with it and think it has so much potential and it is in such a beautiful area that is growing,” said Stewart.