The Chinese warrior statue in the lobby of The Daily Courier in Kelowna is flanked by Kelowna Chamber of Commerce CEO Caroline Grover and Okanagan Valley Newspaper Group publisher Terry Armstrong.
His nickname is Qin.
He's the six-foot-tall, 500 pound replica Qin Dynasty warrior terracotta statue standing in the lobby of The Daily Courier in Kelowna.
Qin came all the way from Xingang, China as a gift from tour provider Citslinc to the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce to promote the Discover China trip it's putting together in conjunction with The Daily Courier Oct. 9-17.
Once the chamber partnered with the paper, our lobby seemed like the perfect place for Qin to camp out for eight months.
Generally, he stands there regally in his armour with a serious expression on his face.
But staff here have taken to having him hold the newspaper of the day.
On Valentine's Day the paper was replaced with a sparkly heart and he also sported a fiery red scarf.
People are invited in anytime we're open to check out Qin.
People are also encouraged to either buy a six-month subscription to the newspaper or extend their current subscription for six months and be entered in a draw to win the incredible all-inclusive Discover Trip to China in October.
You can also purchase or extend subscriptions online at KelownaDailyCourier.ca or PentictonHerald.ca by clicking the Reader Contest icon and then choosing China Trip.
"The Daily Courier and Penticton Herald are always looking for new, exciting projects and services for our readers," said Okanagan Valley Newspapers Group publisher Terry Armstrong.
"We know this is killer value - a trip for the bucket list, for sure. We're offering a free trip to China this October to our readers and we know that's going to be popular."
The draw date is Sept. 15. For those that don't win their way to China, the nine-day trip is being sold for $2,475, based on double occupancy, including all taxes and fees.
That price is for chamber members, but non-members are also welcome for just $150 more.
The package includes a return flight from Vancouver to Shanghai on China Eastern Airlines, domestic flights between Shanghai and Beijing, all ground transportation, accommodations in four and five-star hotels, three meals a day and experienced English-speaking tour guides.
It also includes visits to China's greatest hits, such as the Great Wall, Ming Tombs, Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, temple of Heaven, Summer Palace and 2008 Summer Olympics venues - all in or near Bejing.
In Shanghai, the attractions are the famous Bund waterfront, rug and silk factories, the Pudong Economic Development Zone and Tiger Hill.
A side trip to Hangzhou allows for a boat cruise on West Lake, stops at pagodas and tea houses.
"This trip offers amazing sights and opportunities," said Kelowna Chamber of Commerce CEO Caroline Grover.
"(We'll be) going to seven out of 10 of China's world historic sites, such as the Great Wall and Temple of Heaven."
Grover will be going on a similar Discover China trip in April to experience it for herself and work out any glitches before the Okanagan group goes in October.
I went to China with my then 16-year-old son in May 2008 to do a travel story for this paper and The Canadian Press on Bejing as it got ready to host the Summer Olympics.
And I can highly recommend the city to travellers looking not just for world historic sites, but complete culture shock, exciting cuisine (try the Peking duck) and that buzz that only Asia can deliver.
Discover China is primarily a leisure trip. You could even bring your kids with you on it.
But because it is chamber-organized, businesspeople on the trip can request appointments with Chinese businesses to explore possible partnerships or be matched with companies that want to by goods and services from Canada.
The Chinese are after finance and insurance expertise from Canada, as well as wine and restaurant consulting services.
Chambers of commerce from Sudbury, Winnipeg and Toronto have already sent groups on
previous Discover China trips.
The October trip will also include people from other chambers in Western Canada.
For more information on the trip and a registration form, you can go to KelownaChamber.org/Discover
China or KelownaDailyCourier.ca.
The trip will be on sale until July 31.
A non-refundable deposit of $300 is due upon registration, the balance on July 31.