MEC is coming to the Okanagan; employees say ‘Finally,’ ‘Awesome,’ ‘Yes!’
MEC Kelowna will open spring 2016 at the Orchard Plaza Shopping Centre in the heart of the city
Vancouver, BC (July 15, 2015) Okanagan residents and visitors are expected to eagerly anticipate MEC’s arrival in the region, as Canada’s store for active outdoor lifestyles plans to open a 20,000-square-foot location in the Orchard Plaza Shopping Centre next spring.
When news of the Kelowna store was given to the Co-op’s BC employees last week, the response was swift and overwhelmingly positive. Staff were heard to say, “Finally,” and “Awesome,” while others pumped fists in the air to shouts of “Yes!”
“As many of our staff can attest, the Okanagan offers almost limitless opportunities to be active outdoors,” said MEC CEO David Labistour. “We’re thrilled at the prospect of being able to serve existing and new MEC members from a landmark commercial location in the heart of Kelowna.”
For the retail Co-operative, MEC Kelowna is another way to serve Okanagan and visiting members with a comprehensive assortment of world-class outdoor products – including its value-laden house brand of MEC clothing, bikes, packs, tents and sleeping bags – while also deepening its connection to the region’s outdoor community.
MEC Kelowna will feature a full-service shop for bike and ski repairs as well as bicycle fitting and an equipment rentals program. The store’s product assortment will be tailored to regional activities and member preferences.
The Co-op also plans to introduce its popular events programming to the region, including the MEC Race and Century Ride series. With nominal entry fees, the running races and cycling events are designed to encourage participation. (MEC’s Langley store drew almost 3,000 participants to its events last year.)
MEC will also continue to invest in projects to help strengthen recreation infrastructure and organizations in the region. Over the past decade, MEC has contributed more than $550,000 to projects within the Thompson Okanagan, including $350,000 to help protect climbing access to the Skaha Bluffs near Penticton.
CFO Sandy Treagus said, “Members have been asking for a store in the Okanagan for years – and we’re stoked to soon deliver on that call. We’ll take possession of the former Future Shop space in December, and then get on with bringing MEC Kelowna to life inside and out with an extensive renovation. We’re keen to open next spring.”
MEC Kelowna will be the Co-op’s sixth BC location after Vancouver, North Vancouver, Victoria, Langley and the UBC Outpost. There are presently more than 40,000 MEC members in the region, from Kamloops in the north to Osoyoos in the south.
Canada’s leading outdoor retailer, MEC (Mountain Equipment Co-op) is passionate about inspiring and enabling everyone to lead active outdoor lifestyles. From city streets and yoga studios to backcountry trails and pristine waterways, MEC matches people with the expertise, experience, enthusiasm and gear they need for camping, snowsports, watersports, cycling, climbing, hiking, running, yoga and fitness. Through our commitment to 1% for the Planet, every year member purchases allow us to donate one percent of sales ($3 million in 2014) to Canadian non-profit organizations that help conserve ecologically and recreationally important areas. MEC has over 4 million members across Canada. Become part of MEC with a $5 lifetime membership and visit us at our 18 stores, at www.mec.ca and our Shop MEC iPhone® app.
For more information and to obtain a high-resolution rendering of MEC’s Kelowna store, please contact:
416-365-3630 ext. 252