The world is beating a path to Enderby.
The community has been selected as the site of the 2014 Spirit of Adventure Rendezvous, an event that will attract about 2,500 Girl Guide leaders and youths ages 10 to 18.
“Twenty countries have been invited to attend as have all provinces and territories,” said Laurie Hooker, B.C. Girl Guides public relations advisor.
“We will double their population for a seven-day period.”
SOAR rotates around the province every three years and Enderby was selected over four other Interior communities for the July 19 to 26, 2014 event.
“Enderby offers everything we needed,” said Hooker.
“It has the size, the amenities and the surrounding area is full of opportunities. The lakes and streams are terrific.”
Participants will camp at Riverside Park and the adjacent arena and curling club will also be utilized.
“It’s a real feather in our cap because other communities were vying for it,” said Howie Cyr, Enderby mayor, who envisions long-term economic benefits for the city.
“It’s an opportunity that doesn’t arise often. We want people to go home, talk about Enderby and then come back for holidays.”
Besides Canadian Guides, the 2011 SOAR in Agassiz attracted participants from Ireland, the Ivory Coast, Mexico, New Zealand, the Philippines, the United Kingdom and the U.S.
Beyond activities in Enderby, there will also be a variety of out-trips that could possibly be held in Vernon or other parts of the Okanagan.
“It will really showcase the region,” said Cyr.
SOAR is a $1 million event, including everything from registrations to children spending money and organizational purchases.
Organizers were in Enderby Saturday and Sunday for pre-planning and accounts are being established with pharmacies, hardware stores, gas stations and other businesses.
“The youth will do a scavenger hunt and they will find out about the community. And while they do that, they can pop into the local stores and shop,” said Hooker.
SOAR also provides community service for local charities.
“The food banks benefit from the food we prepare or what we have in excess from the camp,” said Hooker.
The Enderby Museum assisted in selecting the theme, the Heart of the River, and the museum will host a Guides exhibit during SOAR.
Cyr met with a number of the organizers during their planning session Saturday and Sunday.
“What impresses me is the level of organization. It’s a well oiled machine,” he said.