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Retro Fun in Kelowna, B.C.

1 Feb

One of them scoffed and said, “You’re wearing that?” He was referring to my purple and white hoodie. I walked into the loading area in preparation to face the would-be assailants. “No,” I said with a smirk. “I’m wearing this!”  I whipped off my hoodie to reveal an all-black cotton shirt. They stared at me, slack-jawed in fear.…  Okay, I didn’t actually say that. Sure, they were three kids under the age of ten and we were playing laser tag, but a girl can long for lip trembling in her awe-inspiring presence.

B.C. Guy and I spent a day in Kelowna, B.C. where we found ourselves having some retro-fun, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Call it Kelowna’s answer to the anti-date date. Or, have a laugh with your girlfriends with these retro-inspired activities.

Start off your day with a game of laser tag at Planet Lazer. Laser tag is the wuss’ answer to paint ball. If you have a large group, they recommend booking an appointment; however,  if you show up without a reservation, you will likely be able to play a round within approximately 20 minutes. What should you expect if this is your first time playing? First, you will be asked to create a name for yourself.  Be the Bringer of Death or, in a mad display of intellect, find a use for your Latin in naming yourself something like Mortes Bringus. I chose to forgo Latin in university… clearly. Then, you will meet the clerk in a dark room for further instructions. I’m not kidding this time. Seriously, it was dark in there. Strap on your laser gun while listening to the rules of play. Once inside the laser tag room, it’s every man for himself.  And by that, I mean find some little kids and gang up on them.  The playing area is dark save for the black lights that highlight sprayed paint, as well as every piece of lint and detergent on your clothing. Games last about seventeen minutes. Plenty of time to waste your opponents in an epic battle.  Each round is $8 a person.  Current hours are 11:00am – 9:00pm, 7 days a week. For a helpful map and contact information, follow this link:  In case you were wondering, B.C. Guy and I were victorious against the three children.

After laser tag, B.C. Guy and I drove to the downtown core of Kelowna for a bite to eat.  Drive West on Harvey (Highway 97), take a right onto Richter and then a left onto Bernard.  If you haven’t been to the downtown core, pull over for a stroll. Bernard is home to boutiques and long-time shops. About half-way down the street, you will see… wait for it… wait for it… The Grateful Fed. How excited was I to find out that, on our retro day of fun, there was a restaurant named the Grateful Fed? The geek in me was jumping for joy. The restaurant is decked out in rock n’ roll posters, concert tickets, and vinyl record covers. The menu, however, is a fresh take on classic food. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner Tuesday – Saturday. Enjoy breakfast and lunch on Sundays and Mondays. The menu rotates for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I had a falafel burger for lunch, but I got a real kick out of reading the dinner menu. Do you want to try a Salmon Roberts or a Brian Wilson? To find out what these eats are, you’ll have to visit The Grateful Fed.

Finally, drive on down to Scandia Golf and Games.  Scandia is on the north end of Kelowna. When you see the Grand Ten movie theatre on your right hand side, be prepared to pull into a left-hand turn lane when you see the Scandia sign loom into view. Scandia has been voted Best Place for Family Fun in the Okanagan year after year. If you have never been to Scandia, prepare for total sensory overdrive. There are essentially two kinds of arcade games to play. The first are the classic arcade games so ubiquitous in 80’s movies. In fact, if you are a long-time resident of the Okanagan, you may have found that your favourite arcade game disappeared from a hang-out only to spot it in Scandia years later. The second type of arcade games are called redemption games. They will garner you Scandia tickets that are redeemed for cheap prizes. My personal favourite is the new Deal or No Deal game. I was so stressed playing for tickets that I can hardly imagine what it would feel like playing for money. $10 will buy two people an hour’s worth of games.

When you have had your fill of bopping gophers and feeding Big Bertha, play a round of mini-golf. During the winter months, Scandia closes down the outdoor mini-golf course, but you can still play Jungle Golf in the basement. On the last hole, try your luck at the flushing toilet for a chance to win a free round of golf. Many have come, but few have conquered. $8 per person will buy you a round.

                Scandia’s current hours are as follows:

                         Monday-Thursday 10:00-11:00 pm

    Friday 10:00-12:00 am

       Saturday 9:30-12:00 am

      Sunday 10:00-11:00 pm

Beat down those winter blahs with good old-fashioned fun. A day spent playing games and dining in a great atmosphere relieves tension and cures the winter blahs. Take the kids, your date, or your girlfriends. Just don’t take your dog. I don’t think that arcade games will do anything for him.