The Okanagan Military Tattoo had six great years of shows and we were heading into our 7th, July of 2020, when Covid stopped life as we knew it. This has carried over to 2021 and we are awaiting some final words from BC Health as to when we can have pipe bands and military bands get together to practice and for folks to gather in large numbers, even outside. We will continue to wait for a short time and make our public announcement regarding this year’s show as soon as we can.
In the meantime, we can think back on the great shows we did have and the huge array of local, national and international groups we did have come to perform: Military bands from Korea, Canada and the USA; brass and reed bands from the Calgary Stampede (Band of Outriders and Stetson Band); from GB, the Brentwood Imperial Youth Band; Army Cadets from the Vernon Army Cadet Summer Training Camp; Pipe Bands from all over western Canada, especially from the Okanagan Valley and Kamloops; dancers from all over the world and much more. To capture it all on video, we are fortunate to have SHAW Spotlight and their great video crew helping us out. The complete 2015-19 show videos are available on the Tattoo web site, okanagantattoo.ca. To keep everyone involved and to recall some of the highlights we are producing a “Best of” Tattoo Highight Video that should be ready sometime in July. We also want to tell a bit of the story of how a Tattoo actually gets on the floor and starts on time. The short story is, lots of work, precise timing and heaps of very dedicated volunteers and performers.
The Tattoo Organizing Committee meets year round to make plans and get everything in place for the big show. Three days before, the set and lights have to go up and this takes a well co-ordinated ops plan that starts at 0600 and finishes 12 hours later at 1800 (6 PM). From then on it is rehearsals and shows then it is all packed away for another year.
Here is what a 12 hour period at Kal Tire Place looks like three days out:
(you may have to cut and paste the link in your browser).