One of the province’s oldest organizations is gathering in Vernon for its yearly meeting.
The B.C. Cattlemen’s Association’s 85th annual general meeting takes place from Thursday to Saturday at Wesbild Centre.
“It’s the original official cattlemen’s association that started supporting all cattlemen in B.C.,” explained Ron Trickett of the North Okanagan Livestock Association, one of the regional associations; that help form the BCCA.
More than 400 delegates are expected to attend the three-day conference where the theme is “ground, grass and water.”
“That’s a lifeline of a ranch, like flowers to a beekeeper, it is the lifeblood of the ranch,” said Werner Stump, presdient of NOLA and a BCCA director.
“Without grass and access to water, you don’t have a ranch. Not only do you need access, you need to know they’re stable and always going to be there in order to have a ranching business.”
All meetings will be at the Wesbild Centre, which will also host a BCCA trade show throughout the weekend.
The event has drawn more than 70 companies displaying booths, and there will be machinery inside and outside the arena.
The trade show is open free of charge to the public, running Thursday from 5 to 9 p.m, Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The convention kicks off Thursday with a hamburger barbecue from 5 to 7 p.m. The event, by donation, is hosted by the area’s 4-H beef clubs.
One of the convention highlights for delegates will be an educational tour that ties in the ground, grass and water theme.
“Delegates will have the chance to go to three ranches in Lumby and Coldstream, including Coldstream Ranch,” said Lee Hesketh, BCCA director, who runs Silver Hills Ranch near Cherryville.
“The tour will relate different things we’re doing in the North Okanagan, including one of the things we emphasize in our region which is watershed management.”