What happened in Vegas

Dear Editor:

Upon my last visit to Las Vegas, which qualified me as an elite 10-time member, I decided to share some beneficial tips for a successful Vegas trip for others visiting Sin City.

• Do not go walking in flip flops! I have seen too many in agony cause of this poor choice they made while walking the very long strip.

• Stick to your affordable budget while gambling. Once used up, try getting off your butt and do a walkabout to see all what Vegas has to offer in great sights and sounds.

• Buy your water and beer at gas stations rather than inside hotels where prices in hotels are tripled or more. Take in lots of water, especially when Vegas gets to 40-plus degrees.

• There is a great free shuttle from the back of the Linq on the strip to two great casinos just off the strip ... the Orleans and Gold Coast, with the very best buffets in Vegas for the smallest price tag. Get a free player’s card at B Connected for the nice discounted price. Please do not be “one of those” and not tip your free shuttle driver. Even just a dollar matters lots to them and is appreciated.

• A must see is the Mob Museum near Fremont Street and buy your tickets at Half Price Tix with many locations to serve you. In fact, do not buy any tickets at the box offices but find these Half Price Tix to save yourself a ton of money.

• Fremont Street Experience is another must and free. Simply Google “free Fremont concerts Vegas” to find some awesome upcoming bands like The Wallflowers and Collective Soul in August.

• Visit the Hard Rock Hotel before Feb, 2020 as Virgin Hotels bought them out and then no more Hard Rock. Sadly. I just witnessed the very best concert ever there... Raiding the Rock Vault, another must and award-winning.

• Avid golfer? Only book online to save a ton of money rather than just calling the course. Bali Hai and Las Vegas National are the two best I have played and both are nearest to the strip and both are much more affordable booking online. Tiger Woods won his very first pro event at LVN, plus some great scenes of the movie “Casino” were filmed there too.

• Try and find a hotel with a hot tub with good working jets for after all the walking you will end up doing. The Rio has a great “adult only” pool area and hot tub with a DJ to 6 p.m.

• The “Deuce” bus service is only $8 for 24 solid hours and you can hop on and off at any time in that 24-hour period for just $8!

For more tips and good insight please visit me on Facebook under: “Mr. Vegas Traveler & Reviewer” as your search.

Nol Preen

Kelowna

Missing bike has happy ending

Dear Editor:

In the Bible there’s a parable that Jesus tells of a woman who searches for her lost coin and when she finds it, she celebrates with her friends and neighbours.

Today, I felt like that woman. 

I had a stop to make at Christ Lutheran Church on Gordon Drive, for about an hour over lunchtime. I’d forgotten my key for my bicycle lock and unwisely figured that if I just left my bike in broad daylight it would still be there.

I took a picture of it just in case.

When I came out it was gone.

A good friend drove me around; we looked high and low. 

I called the police. 

They warned me not to approach my bike or anyone near it, if we found it. 

Work prayed for me. 

I prayed for my bike.

No sooner did I arrive back at work than I got a call from Const. Shami of the Kelowna RCMP. 

She found a bike matching the description in the downtown area.

I needed to identify an earring I’d left hanging on the basket. That was no problem. Those frustrating earrings had irritated me the last windy day as they flapped and banged on my ears, so I’d taken them off and squeezed the lobe inserts onto the basket.

Const. Shami had my bike. Wow within an hour and a half of reporting it.

My work shoes, lunch kit and keyless U-lock that had been in the basket were the only things missing. 

The parable of the lost coin is one of a trilogy of parables about redemption ... how the Father cares about every one of us and seeks us and waits for us. I do pray that walking a mile in my shoes might redeem a thief and bring him home to His Father too. As I’m forgiven, I forgive him. 

If you happen to read this, Wayward One, rest your weary head and be glad that the shoes are a gift and my bike will be better attended.

Thank you, God. Thank you all those at work who prayed and thank you Const. Shami of the Kelowna RCMP, whose joy was a joy to behold, proving the lost can be found with faith.

Monica Iwanowsky

Kelowna 

Mass hysteria of climate change

Dear Editor:

I am not a "denier" of climate change. In fact, I believe that climate change has been around since Earth was formed.  

In many millions of years, before humans arrived on the scene, it has been through many phases, Ice ages, temperate ages. Tropical ages and everything in between. All of this without any help or hindrance from humankind.     

I believe that the current climate is the continuation of the meltdown of the last ice age.    

I do not believe that climate change has only been around since humanity arrived.   Some places on Earth that were dry are now wet, some that were wet are now dry.   Glaciers that have been melting since the last meltdown began and will continue to melt until the climate decides Earth’s next phase and humans can do nothing about it. 

The changes will continue.   

Life of all kinds on Earth needs CO2 to exist and no matter how many billions of dollars are taxed around the world, CO2 will go through its normal cycle.   

Theories and theorem of “climate scientists” are exactly that. Nobody has proved how much human activity adds to the CO2 in the atmosphere. Some scientists say 1/1,500,000%. Some say 100%.    

Who will be right if ever the truth is proven?  

Anyway, the masses that are caught up in the mass hysteria that surrounds this subject, will not agree with these beliefs, however, they are mine.

Derek Coyle

Peachland

Development costs taxpayers

Dear Editor:

On June 4, Kelowna Coun. Gail Given publicly criticized a resident opposed to official community plan land use and zoning amendments for a South Pandosy project requiring public subsidies totalling $1.4 million. Mayor Colin Basran publicly agreed with her.

That subsidy includes a $233,000 public assist from taxpayers and utility users to offset the developer’s cost of providing new roads, parks, water and sewer services for community use; a $33,000 rental housing grant from taxpayers to further offset his infrastructure costs and an estimated $1.15 million in rental housing and commercial revitalization tax exemptions from taxpayers to ease his tax burden.

I am the resident who opposed those subsidies. I asked council why taxpayers and utility users should subsidize projects that do not conform to OCP and zoning bylaws and create numerous impacts in residential areas adjacent to the lake and the Abbott Street corridor.

Over the years, my numerous attempts urging council to direct staff to include public-cost estimates in public hearing documents has fallen on deaf ears, including those of Given and Basran.

Council’s decisions to grow Kelowna have huge public costs for taxpayers.

The 2018 capital plan showed council could not fund $478 million worth of required public projects by 2027.

A new 2019 capital plan shows infrastructure costs rising over 2018 estimates by $200 million to total $1.24 billion by 2028. This 20% cost increase suggests volatility, unpredictability and difficulty sustaining growth and protecting taxpayers.

The 2019 plan forecasts Kelowna will have 20,000 new residents by 2028 and estimates these new residents will trigger a need for new infrastructure costing $643 million, or 52% of the total. The average cost for each new resident is $32,000.

The 2019 plan requires taxpayers to pay $211 million, or 17% of the total directly from general taxation (13%) and from a new infrastructure levy (4%). This taxpayer amount includes $17 million estimated to pay down $125 million in debt the city will accrue by 2028.

I find council’s decision-making behaviour disturbing. They ignore residents, due diligence, transparency and the OCP; refuse to prepare plans and cost assessments for South Pandosy; bully and  discredit those who question them; and mismanage growth allowing public costs and property taxes to rise by 21% since 2011, when both Given and Basran were first elected.

Until proven otherwise, I consider my public subsidy cost estimates for this South Pandosy project to be correct.

Richard Drinnan

Kelowna

Religious rights belong in schools

Dear Editor:

Re: “Pride vote should be unanimous,” by James Miller (Courier editorial, June 7).

You suggest that anyone who wants to proselytize should send their children to a Christian private school because strong religious beliefs should not be part of a public school education, even though you just had stated that public schools are for all.

Is having a strong religious belief not allowed in a public school? Is a belief in God and His teaching not allowed?

Thanks to Lee-Ann Tiede and Amy Geistlinger for representing a majority of parents. I recall that Lee-Ann led all of the other candidates in votes in last fall’s election.

Rosemary Lalonde

Kelowna

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