Hodgepodge by Charlie Hodge: Cipes and other stuff


Hodgepodge: Cipes and other stuff

By Charlie Hodge.

It’s always nice to see a good guy get something nice.

Enter one Stephen Cipes who was announced this week as a selection into the BC Restaurant Hall of Fame.

Stephen will be inducted October 7 along with other culinary champs. The 2019 class of inductees also includes Manuel Ferreira from the Okanagan.

Cipes will join other industry leaders from the valley already in the Hall of Fame including Chefs Franco Coccaro (La Bussola) and Harry McWatters (Encore Vineyards).

Owner of the fabulous Summerhill Pyramid Winery, Cipes is being inducted for, “providing holistic hospitality in his winery and his restaurant.”

Rightfully so. Ever since Stephen first arrived in Kelowna 1986 (when wine production was very early in the development of the British Columbia wine industry) his determination to champion sustainability and organic agriculture has helped him forge a unique path to success. “We are recognizing him (Cipes) for his leadership as an advocate of the land and for bringing sustainable wines and flavours to the restaurant table,” explains Ian Tostenson, President and CEO of the BC Restaurant and Food Services Association (BCRFA) says.


Speaking of shining stars in an industry – Kelowna music and theatre fans are in for another huge treat. Some of the most amazing talents in the Okanagan are banding together to bring a performance of the rock/opera icon TOMMY to the Kelowna Community Theatre.

“It’s amazing TOMMY has fifty-years on it and yet the music and themes are as relevant today as they were in 1969,”says Director Randall Robinson.

Presented by the Theatre Kelowna Society The Who’s legendary rock opera will hit the KCT stage September 12th to 15th.

The incredible cast and spectacular nine-piece band is produced by the creators of RAFT Pat Brown and Robinson. The dynamic duo continue to turn out world class productions and based on RAFT I can hardly wait for TOMMY. (Brown and Robinson were also the lead singers and writers leading the outstanding rock band Ten2Nine).

Thankfully Brown rejoins the vocal side of the stage in TOMMY as part of the show’s 26-member cast. Brown sings and performs as Captain Walker, Natasha Daly as Mrs. Walker (Tommy’s mother and father), Josh Richardson, and Annie Scott as the Acid Queen. Local rock icon Jimmy LeGuilloux also lends his skills to the show.

A new face for local music/theatre fans is Mitchell Lynch-Brown as Tommy.

“It’s another complete honour to be working with so many of the Okanagan’s most talented actors, singers and musicians,” boasts Robinson.

“Based on the iconic 1969 rock concept album TOMMY is an exhilarating story of hope, healing and the human spirit. The story of the pinball-playing, deaf, dumb and blind boy who triumphs over his adversities has inspired and amazed audiences for 50 years.”

Robinson also wants potential audiences to know they can expect a quality performance when they attend.

“Not to be confused with the kitschy 1975 film featuring Anne Margaret, Elton John and Tina Turner, the dynamic theatrical presentation of TOMMY premiered on Broadway in 1992. This five-time Tony Award-winning musical was translated for the stage into a high-energy, one-of-a- kind theatrical event!”
If Randall says so – I believe him.

Can’t wait.

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Charlie Hodge is a best-selling author, writer, a current Kelowna City Councillor, and a Director on the Regional District of the Central Okanagan Board. He spent more than 25 years as a full-time newspaper journalist and has a diverse background in public relations, promotions, personal coaching, and strategic planning. A former managing editor, assistant editor, sports editor, entertainment editor, journalist, and photographer, Hodge also co-hosted a variety of radio talk shows and still writes a regular weekly newspaper column titled Hodge Podge, which he has crafted now for 41 years. His biography on Howie Meeker, titled Golly Gee It’s Me is a Canadian bestseller and his second book, Stop It There, Back It Up – 50 Years of the NHL garnered lots of attention from media and hockey fans alike. Charlie is currently working on a third hockey book, as well as a contracted historical/fiction novel. His creative promotional skills and strategic planning have been utilized for many years in the Canadian music industry, provincial, national, and international environmental fields, and municipal, provincial, and federal politics. Charlie is a skilled facilitator, a dynamic motivational speaker, and effective personal coach. His hobbies include gardening, canoeing, playing pool, and writing music. Charlie shares his Okanagan home with wife Teresa and five spoiled cats.


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