Events and Activities

Our club holds four regularly scheduled activities.  The business of the club is carried out at general meetings at which a speaker is featured.  Our Outdoor Club group gets together weekly, the Coffee and Chat group bi-weekly and the Book Club monthly.  Further details for each of these are set out below.

Monthly Meetings

We hold monthly general meetings September through May, excluding December.  These are held at the Schubert Centre, 3505 30th Ave, Vernon, BC, on the third Monday of every month from 10:30 am until noon unless the date is a statutory holiday.  In this case, the meeting will be re-scheduled.

Our monthly meetings provide an opportunity for members to socialize with other members, further their own learning through informative speakers, and participate in club business.  Reasonable fees are charged for speaker/coffee/lunch, speaker and coffee only and coffee (and tea) only.  The lunch is a simple buffet consisting of soup and sandwich, served at the end of the meeting.

This year’s speakers and topics are set out below. Future speakers and topics will be posted when the information becomes available.   

May 27, 2024 – Our scheduled speaker is Cindy Masters, Executive Director of Okanagan Village Housing Society.  Cindy was born and raised in Vernon and is excited to be speaking about the work of the Okanagan Village Housing Society.  This Society is a registered charity whose mandate is to develop a permanent inventory of managed, safe and comfortable rental housing at below market rate for the “forgotten population” of lower income workers, families, pensioners, and people with diverse abilities who are in need of help along their way to becoming or remaining long-term contributing citizens.”  

More information regarding the Society can be found at

April 15, 2024 – Lisa Aschenbrenner, a Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN) since 2013, spoke to us courtesy of Nature’ Fare Markets.  She conducts nutrition consultations as arranged in part through Nature’s Fare.  Lisa’s presentation to us was general in nature, dealing with the 3 root causes of health issues:  stress, inflammation and digestion.  She stated that these were inter-related and that addressing on of the areas can have a positive ripple effect on the other 2.  Lisa offered suggestions for reducing stress, improving digestion, and reducing inflammation.

March 18, 2024 – Our featured speaker was Margaret Clark, Manager of Restorative Justice, Canadian Mental Health Association – Vernon & District Branch.  She spoke of her work relating to Restorative Justice, with which she has been involved since 2006, and her personal journey that led to this work.  She informed her audience of some of the details of the process through which individuals become engaged in restorative justice sessions, including which persons form part of the conversation which brings the person or persons harmed through criminal conduct with the person who caused the harm and how the various impacts of that conduct can best be addressed and resolved.   

Referrals to the program, which operates within the Vernon / North Okanagan Detachment area (including Vernon, Okanagan Indian Band, Falkland, Spallumcheen, Armstrong, Enderby, Coldstream, Lumby and Regional Districts Electoral areas), are made by the RCMP or other referral sources.  Eligibility includes acknowledgement of the commission of the offence and meeting the criteria established by the referring agency.  In most cases, eligibility is restricted to first time offenders. 

It then falls to Ms Clark and other staff to contact the necessary parties and to set up the sessions.  Participation in RJ Services is voluntary throughout the entire process.

February 26, 2024 – Liz Blakeway, Network Director, North Okanagan Land to Table Network, aka L2T-NO, spoke of this regional food system network that began as a study circle of local farm women.  Based on the Vermont Farm to Plate model, it aims to provide access to markets for small and medium farm producers and to solve food provision problems. The longer term goals are to provide regional community resilience and preparedness with respect to our food supply and hence food security.  This network includes not only the farmers but also food processors, institutions, Indigenous communities, restaurants, retail food stores, and food banks. It also plans to connect producers to consumers as part of emergency preparedness. Additionally, the group hopes to form local hubs to ensure food availability,  during emergencies.

For more information on this organization,  check out their website at

January 15, 2024 – Christine Kirby, a Road Safety and Community Coordinator for ICBC, gave a terrific presentation called “Drive Smart for Seniors.”  It included refreshers of the road, preparing for an upcoming road test, and giving up your license.  The event was well attended, with a number of members of the public joining us.  Christine happily answered everyone’s questions; she also  provided reflective tags for persons to put onto coats etc to make sure of visibility to drivers when out and about.  

As the ICBC website says, “The rules of the road are constantly evolving. We could all use a refresher every now and then to keep our skills up.” 


November 20, 2023 – Lloyd Davies and Sasha Carter spoke to our members about the Sunflower Childcare Centre to be opened next year on the Vernon Campus of Okanagan College.  Lloyd and his wife Janet Armstrong were the leadership donors who spearheaded the campaign for the building of this centre while Sasha  is the Development Officer for Okanagan College Foundation.  The new 44-seat Centre will offer affordable childcare through programs like the $10-a-Day childcare initiative or the Child Care Fee Reduction initiative.   The photo is an artist’s rendering of the immediate outdoor space for the Centre.  More information about the Centre can be found at


October 16 – Laisha Rosnau, recently appointed Executive Director of the Caetani Centre, gave a brief history of the Caetani family, with her presentation including video clips from the family’s early years in Vernon.  She briefly described the process of researching and writing her novel, Little Fortress, as well reading an excerpt from the novel.    (photo credit UBCO)


September 18 – The guest speaker this month was Erin Kennedy, Artistic Director of the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre for the past thirteen years.  She spoke about the upcoming season at at the Performing Arts Centre, as well the various activities the Centre engages in to involve the community.  She also answered questions about her work in arranging programming for a season that includes 24-38 multidisciplinary performances.

Special Interest Groups

Book Club

Are you looking for good books; thoughtful, intelligent, stimulating discussion; fun and companionship?  Our book club provides that and more!

CFUW Vernon’s Book Club meets regularly on the 4th Tuesday of the month and guests are welcome to attend up to 3 meetings before becoming members of CFUW Vernon.  

Meetings are held at the homes of members and times may vary.

Book Club Members each choose a book for the month in which they are hosting.  Books can be from any genre, and include fiction and non-fiction.  Here is the current line-up. 

Sept:  Lessons from the Edge by Marie Yovanowich

Oct:  Violin Conspiracy by B. Slocumb

Nov:  The Book of Longing by Sue Monk Kidd

Dec:  The Dictionary of Lost Words (at The Med restaurant) by Pip Williams


Jan:  Worn, A People’s History of Clothing by Sofi Thanhauser

Feb:  The Small Things That End The World by Jeanette Lynes

Mar:  Horse by G. Brooks

Apr:  Wan by Dawn Promislow

May:  The Things We Keep by Sally Hepworth

Jun:  The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi

Coffee and Chat

These sessions are held on alternate Fridays, 10:05 am until noon, currently  in the Okanagan Room on the 2nd floor of the Okanagan Regional Library in Vernon.  Get to know other members in an informal setting  through self-moderated lively discussion of a topic decided in advance.  Discussion topics are selected by a member who prepares a brief opening overview then discussion ensues.    

Past topics include, 

  • Cell phones/smart phones and their impact on us and our society;    
  • Current scams, how to look out for them and how to protect yourself against them;
  • Discuss a book you have read recently that you would like to recommend to others.

Outdoors Club

During the non-winter months, this group takes weekly hikes on various trails in and around Vernon, of which there are a significant number.  There may also be a possibility of a swim.  The activity starts at 10 am on Fridays at a location chosen by the group leader but suggestions for locations are always welcome.  

With the arrival of snow, the Friday schedule is maintained but the group switches to snowshoeing.  There are a number of snowshoe trails within Sovereign Provincial Park or Silver Star Mountain that the group frequents.  

Whether hiking or snowshoeing, an effort is made to carpool to make getting to the chosen destination easier for the participants.   Additionally, depending on schedules, at the conclusion of the activity,  members stop somewhere for coffee.

© CFUW Vernon 2023