Meet JP, a husband and father, Kamloops has been his stomping grounds for the majority of his life. Today, you can find JP cruising around Kamloops pursuing his passion for the music scene.
Who is your favourite person to spend time with and why?
My wife Maggie and daughter Isabelle. In today's busy world there isn't a lot of time when the 3 of us all spend together, so when we do it's really special.
What is your favourite local store in Kamloops and why?
Barnacle Records. Ronan and Jessie are the epitome of the ma and pa shop and a great success story in town. Plus they are in the business of selling music.
Describe yourself in one word.
If you could go anywhere in the world right at this moment where would you go and why?
I would like to go somewhere that experienced hardship during the 20th century, such as Croatia or an Eastern European country that lived under communism. I think there is a great deal of perspective to be gained in places such as those.
What is your favourite activity in Kamloops?
Lately, it has been biking or walking the Rivers Trail with my family. During the winter we did a lot of snowshoeing at Kenna Cartwright.
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
During my football career at UBC, I had to make a tackle on the goal line at a pivotal moment in the game. I not only got flattened but also dragged into the end zone by the running back. Very humbling when that happens in front of 5,000 people.
What is the most inspiring thing that has happened to you?
When I was 20 one of my close friends was diagnosed with cancer. At the time we were both playing football in Kelowna for the Okanagan Sun where we both worked and trained together. Watching the resolve he had, the unwillingness to feel sorry for himself and the perseverance through the treatment are things that inspire me to this day. He not only beat cancer but returned to play the following season with the Sun.
Tell us your favourite childhood memory.
I attended Arthur Hatton Elementary and was very fortunate to have taken part in Odyssey of the Mind (OM), which was a creative problem-solving program. Our team won a provincial silver medal when I was in grade 6, which as I recall was a big accomplishment even for a school from Kamloops. Beyond the memories, it was very formative in terms of influencing my ability to think critically and creatively. My childhood friends who were part of that team still to this day cite OM as a massively positive influence.
The Blazers' Memorial Cup years also stick out. I have a fond memory of attending a round-robin game between Kamloops and Detroit at the 1995 tournament with my mother. Playing high school football in Kamloops during the end of the heyday of the late 90s/early 2000s was also very cool.
Where do you volunteer or give back to in the community?
I coach the South Kamloops Secondary senior football team. One of the most important lessons I learned from the game was that I could accomplish anything that I dedicated myself to. I think that's a very valuable lesson for young people to learn.
If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
The world is facing turmoil, unlike anything we have witnessed in modern history. I believe empathy and compassion are the two values humanity will need in spades to navigate the environmental, economic and equality problems we face. I would endow the world with more of those virtues.
Where would you sneak away to in Kamloops to spend some time alone?
Truthfully, if we're talking about the very rare alone time I get away from my family you can usually catch me at Red Collar or Iron Road having a beer.
Where would you like to see positive change in Kamloops and why?
I would like to see further development along the Tranquille corridor. The neighbourhood has huge potential and there are some exciting changes already but I think the repairs that some of the buildings require are too much for younger entrepreneurs.
What do you think makes Kamloops great?
In many ways, Kamloops has the community of a small town, but the amenities of a big city. There is also the tremendous infrastructure for kids and families here.
What are 3 things on your bucket list?
Tell us something that not everyone may know about you.
I was a high school teacher in Merritt for 3 years.
What is the name of your business/organization?
Factotum Cassettes & Oddities
Why did you get into/start this business?
When I returned to Kamloops there were very few opportunities for bands who pursue original music in a modern genre. I decided I would support those bands by helping release their music and promoting shows for them.
What is the goal of your business?
Five years ago you were hard pressed to find any craft beer on tap in this city. Today, you'll see a tap of Red Collar IPA in almost every establishment in town. I want the bands and music I promote to become just as ubiquitous in Kamloops.
What has been your biggest struggle either at work or in life?
I work from home and take care of my one and a half-year-old daughter. It is tough to balance work with being an engaging parent. It is also difficult as live music happens at night, so I often miss spending time with my family in the evenings.
What do you always find yourself saying?
Keep moving forward.
Tell us your best piece of life advice.
Nothing worthwhile comes easily.
If you could spend one whole day with anyone in the world who is currently alive, who would you select?
Practically speaking, that would be my wife as I can't recall the last time we've had an entire day to ourselves.
Wishful thinking would have been Anthony Bourdain. He seemed like he would have been a cool guy to hang out with.
Why do you think it is important to shop locally?
Spending locally keeps money in our community and creates jobs.
What has been your proudest accomplishment?
There has been a lot along the way. One recent accomplishment was my time spent working for Red Collar Brewing and the positive changes we made to the craft beer culture in the city.
Give someone you think that deserves it a shout out and explain why!
Corey Adkin at Leon John's. Like myself, he's a guy who went off and lived the Vancouver life. He ultimately decided he wanted to invest in Kamloops, but brought back the perspective of a major urban center.
My choice for the KamloopsBCNow In Focus spotlight is:
Some general comments I would like to share are:
There are some great homegrown bands in Kamloops that I am promoting and supporting via Factotum. Please support them however possible, whether that is by attending live shows, purchasing or streaming their music or being a patron of local businesses who support music.
We encourage you to leave your comments and words of support below and submit your own nomination by clicking HERE. You are also welcome to submit a form of your own by clicking HERE. Thank you, Kamloops.
In Focus is our gift to the community. A way for us to help show our recognition of the people, businesses, and organizations that help make our city great!