Tower Ranch was sold in a receivership/court sale last week in a sealed bid process. Three bids were received one from a group of members from Tower Ranch, one from an existing reputable Kelowna golf course owner and one from an Alberta based development company. The Alberta development company was the successful bidder and will take over Tower Ranch in the next few weeks. Their final offer was significantly higher than the other two. The Alberta company is also interested in the Tower Ranch housing development as well, with a bid pending on the land.

The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce recently announced its new board of directors for 2012. "We are thrilled with the high interest of candidates for our board this year" said chamber president Karen Hawes. "All the candidates bring a multitude of experience to the chamber board. "

The new Valley First Credit Union will open in Rutland on Highway 33 and Rutland Road sometime towards the end of 2012. Marc Germain will be the branch manager at the new location named. For now, Germain is hanging his hat at the Orchard Plaza branch on Cooper Road. He was formerly with RBC.

Angela McLean O'Heir has been promoted to Okanagan regional manager for Prospera Credit Union. She will be overseeing the four branches in the Okanagan two in Kelowna, one in Vernon and one in Penticton. Her office will be located in Kelowna at the credit union branch on Harvey and Cooper.

Laudalina deJesus Sofiak, Sue Leroux, Darin Schierback and Jonathan Cone are four new partners with the firm of Kemp, Harvey Hunt Ward Inc., located at 101 1593 Sutherland Ave. The company provides accounting, taxation and consulting services to a wide range of owner managed businesses.

The former head professional of Black Mountain Golf Club, Brice MacDermott, has moved on to a new entrepreneurial venture. He, along with his parents well known clothiers and business people Wayne and Jay MacDermott of MacDermott on Bernard are opening a new shop on May 1 called MacD's Lakeside in the former Passport Clothing outlet on Bernard Avenue below Earl's On Top. And Brice will now be the general manger of both stores. The 1,400 sq. ft. clothing store will be selling Tommy Bahama for both men and women during the summer months and brands including Canada Goose for both men and women during the winter months.

Coinciding with Jour du Macaron taking place in Paris, New York and large Canadian cities, Sandrine Fresh Pastry and Chocolate, at 1865 Dilworth Dr., will launch Macaron Day in Kelowna, in support of the KGH Foundation. Sandrine was the first in town to offer these delicate almond meringue confections and now has 15 flavours in a rainbow of colours and fillings. Join them on Tuesday, March 20, when participating places in town will sample macarons (with limited quantities by location) and donate 25 per cent of all sales to the foundation. Go to Sandrine's, KGH Cafeteria, Okanagan Spirits, CedarCreek Winery, Lakehouse Home Store or Gray Monk Winery to support this fundraiser. Call 250 860 1202.

The Westbank First Nation has hired Mandi Carroll, who has relocated from Central Alberta, as their new communications officer for the band.

Angela McManus has joined The View Winery (look for the red shoe) in the role of marketing muse and director. The winery will host a Cellar Dinner and Winemakers Olympics on May 12. It will be an entertaining evening of fine wine and pairings with the excitement of the Winemaker's Olympics. Participants will be put through their paces in a series of events, which will not only test their abilities, but entertain onlookers as well. Call 250 860 0742 or 250 215 1331 for reservations.

Local business woman, Lynn Sorsdahl, of LikesLocal, wants to ask small business owners: "Are your customers finding you or are they finding your competition on the Internet or is your business mobile friendly?" You can call Lynn to get your free Internet Visibility Score Report and see if you would qualify for a free mobile website. The company serves the Okanagan Valley. Call 250 491 1997.

Sharon Sebo has taken Chris Penty and turned him into a dancing machine for the Hospice Dancing with the Stars fundraiser. He is hosting "Pen tini" (reinvention of the martini) for a pre fundraiser on Saturday, March 17, at the Senior Centre, 1353 Richter St. For tickets ($35) call 250 765 9733.

Women Canada Goose Constable Parka Black Nz

The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce and Students in Free Enterprise Green Business Awards finalists for 2012 are Okanagan Grocery Artisan Breads, Optic Signs Marketing, Sunshine Farms and Urban Harvest Organic Delivery (1 10 employee category); and Cintas Canada Ltd., Disney Online Studios Canada and Nature's Fare Markets (31 plus employee category). Recipients of the Sustainability Leader of the Year Award and the Green Innovator Award will be chosen from the businesses selected as finalists in the small and large green business categories.

Serving on the board this year are Curtis Darmohray, Pushor Mitchell; Carmen Sparg, of Total Office; Rob Siddon, of Coast Wholesale Appliances; Sally Ginter, of the Canadian Cancer Society; Gladys Fraser, of Scotiabank; and Ben Padskalny, of SW Audio Visual.

Crossroads Treatment Center is still open for business. Although they had to close their supportive living programs due to provincial gaming grant funding cuts, they are still operating their detox and withdrawal unit and their treatment centers in Kelowna. Although supportive living was a big part of addictions recovery, they are not in a position to continue providing this particular service when there are other service providers in the community that are available. They have some great plans for the two remaining service offerings. Shelley Gilmore is the executive director of the society. Call 250 864 1153.

To celebrate a one year anniversary in their new location, Capri Hair Design at 1525A Gordon Dr. (across from Mediterranean Market) is having a contest to rename the salon. Owner Colleen Woelders and stylists Pat Cudmore and Lorraine Drake who have been together at the salon for 10 years. All felt it was time to rename the business after they relocated from the Capri Mall last year. The winner will be awarded a $100 salon gift certificate, dinner for two at the Twisted Tomato Restaurant and an additional gift certificate from Lipo Laser and Spa. The winner and new name will be announced on April 3. Call 250 861 8878.

Following up on my news tip from last week, a Swiss Chalet Restaurant will open on the Westside in August. New owners Maurice Baker and his son Dallas James, with help from their wives Lois Baker and Dina James, have located the restaurant in the Westbank Hub North Centre (across from Walmart in the CIBC Bank Women Canada Goose Constable Parka Black Nz parking lot). It will be about the same size as the former location on Harvey with the same great food, but with a brand new concept and a fresh new look. Stay tuned for the exact opening day.

Birthdays of the week: Happy 105th Dorothy Bowden, Three Links (March 16); Ian Macdonald (March 19); Harvey Gorsline (March 16); Pat Walls (March 17); Bruce Wilson (March 18); Gary Benson, Benson Law LLP (March 19); Frank and Dilys Singer, both same day (March 21).

´╗┐Agency services now all housed under one roof

Deb Doig, with women's services at Kelowna General Hospital, will retire on March 29. Not quite sure what she is thinking about, as now she will have to spend all her time with hubby Ron, owner of Baxter's Pub. Laurel D'Andrea, publisher of Beyond 50, says her clients were asking for an online component to their current advertising to increase exposure.

The Red Cross Health Equipment Loan Program (HELP) has relocated to a larger facility at 124 Adams Rd. in Kelowna. Interior. Volunteers and staff are now operating from one full service location. The space comprises of a two storey office block and a five bay warehouse. Three of the bays are outfitted to provide the equipment lending service to residents and to provide cleaning, repair and distribution to another 12 community sites in the Okanagan Shuswap corridor. Two other bays are in the process of being designed to double as a training center and as a Red Cross Disaster Operations Centre. John Richey is the regional operation manager for the Red Cross in the southern Interior and Craig Burns is the health equipment loan program manager.

Former Kelowna mayor Sharon Shepherd received the Gert Beadle Award at the International Women's Day Celebrations on March 9 at the Laurel Packinghouse. Organized by the Okanagan College Women's Resource Center, the event coincided with International Women's Day, the theme of the annual event this year being women in politics. The award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated commitment to women's equality and social justice. at the corner of Springfield and Dilworth. This is the market's 17th year in operation.

The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board has a new 2012 13 board, representing the Central, North and Shuswap areas. Congrats to president Rob Shaw (Royal LePage Vernon); vice president, Karen Singbell (Re/Max, Sicamous); past president George Cwiklewki (Macdonald Realty); Cliff Shillington (Re/Max Kelowna); Scott Mayne (Points West Realty); Tanis Read (Coldwell Banker); Kent Jorgenson (Re/Max Kelowna); Christopher Miller (Royal LePage); Darcy Griffiths (Re/Max Vernon); Rorie Holton (Royal LePage Vernon); Sharon Dahl (Century 21, Enderby); and Steve Lewis (Salmon Arm).