About the S.S. Sicamous Society

The S.S. Sicamous Marine Heritage Society works to protect, preserve and promote the marine heritage of the Okanagan Valley. Our Society was founded to preserve the Sternwheeler S.S. Sicamous, and prevent it from slated closure. Later the society began acquiring other vessels and structures that were in danger of disappearing. Today the Society works to preserve and communicate this unique chapter in Okanagan and Canadian History.


Protecting Heritage

There were once sternwheelers and tugs all over the lakes and rivers of BC. This part of our history has mostly vanished, as the fleets were torn apart for scrap, or lost to fire. Through the work of our volunteers, and the support of our community, these physical reminders of the past can be preserved for the future. We are working to communicate their importance with the public, and raise awareness about this aspect of Canadian history. Here are the structures that are under the care of our volunteers:
Stern Wheeler S.S. Sicamous
The Stern Wheeler S.S. Sicamous is the largest surviving stern wheeler in Canada. The Society has its base inside of the ship, with the office in the old mail room. We work year round to maintain the ship, to ensure its structural integrity and continued preservation. It is a full time job, and the volunteer crew is always busy.
Tug Boat Naramata
The Naramata is the last surviving steam tug in the interior of BC. The tug was moved to a land berth in 1991 as an emergency measure, to prevent the ship from sinking. Work on the tug is primarily focused on maintenance. We are fundraising to lift the tug into a cradle, so that damage to the hull can be examined and repaired, but this is a long term capital project. Presently the work focusses on monitoring structural integrity, painting and cleaning where needed to ensure the ship is suitable for visitors.
Tug Boat No. 6
Tug Number 6 was the last commercial tug to operate on Okanagan Lake. Its retirement marked the end of an era within our community. A team of mechanics and engineers are volunteering their time to restore the engines. The ship is diesel, and all machinery is theoretically intact. Several generators are now in working order, and the tug boat is now able to generate electricity for lighting. The tug is on the water, so it needs to be winterized each year, with pipes drained and sealed. Then come the spring, volunteers are back on board getting everything ready. The volunteers are now focusing on restoring the primary engine.
The Sternwheeler S.S. Okanagan (*Stern Saloon*)
This is the last surviving structure from a sister ship of the SS Sicamous. There were once ships like this all over the interior lakes and water ways of BC. Like the Okanagan, they were torn apart and used for scrap. We keep this structure as a reminder of the vessels that used to ply the waters. Volunteers have repaired the roofing, so the structure is waterproof and protected against the elements. A partial deck has also been built by volunteers, to improve accessibility to visitors. The interior is also being refinished, with historically accurate wood paneling. In the future, we hope to find a commercial use for this structure, but again, this is a long term goal.
The Dredge Shed
The Dredge Shed was once the base of operations for a now vanished Dredge Boat fleet, responsible for maintain the waterways and wharfs. The dredge shed now houses supplies for restoration activities. It also houses our larger artefacts, such as the war canoes, and an original life boat from the S.S. Sicamous; all future restoration projects for our volunteers.


Learn about the Heritage of the Okanagan Valley

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Ships & Heritage Structures
Years in Operation
Museum Visitors Per Year

Supporters & Donors

Thanks to the supporters and donors that make our work possible
Cannery Brewing (Penticton)
Cannery Brewing (Penticton)

Restoration & Repairs

The Sicamous has its own beer! A portion of sales go back to the ship to for continued repairs and restorations.

The City of Penticton
The City of Penticton

Core Funding & Operations

The City provides funding to assist with day to day operations on board the SS Sicamous,

Community Foundation of the South Okanagan | Similkameen
Community Foundation of the South Okanagan | Similkameen

Constructing the Wharf

Awarded funding for construction of a historically accurate wharf.

Contact us

1099 Lakeshore Drive West Penticton, BC V2A 1B7
E-mail: info@sssicamous.ca Phone: (250) 492-0403