Play – IRA Gold Sponsor

Leading an active lifestyle, and having fun with fitness, is just one reason why Shannon and Cy decided to open Play Kelowna nearly nine years ago. Play is a premier athletic footwear and apparel store, catering to those who love living actively.   It was a missing component in Kelowna’s retail market, and Shannon and Cy, Play’s co-owners, wanted to keep people shopping local instead of driving to Vancouver to find what they needed.  

Both Shannon and Cy have broad retail backgrounds, which contributed to the idea of Play. With a combination of experience in purchasing, product allocation, e-commerce and sales, Shannon and Cy both started their careers on the sales floor. This, says Shannon, has been key to Play’s welcoming environment and “old school” customer service. “We have served Olympic athletes to new runners and walkers, always with knowledge, kindness and in a welcoming atmosphere.”

Play’s 5,000 square-foot sales floor features such brands as Patagonia, Arc’teryx, Ciele, DU/ER, rabbit and more. The shoe wall is nothing short of magnificent, a thing of beauty for shoe enthusiasts. Showcasing more than 200 styles at any given time, you’ll find well-known brands such as HOKA, On, New Balance, Brooks and several others. 

Judging by the sheer selection of apparel, it’s apparent that Play doesn’t focus on just one type of customer. Shannon says Play’s product assortment does cater to runners, hikers, and those with an athletic lifestyle. “But our customer base is very broad and includes anyone who is looking to stay active, whatever that means to them,” says Shannon.

In addition to their retail knowledge, Shannon and Cy’s active lifestyles also factored into the opening of Play. Shannon was a soccer player growing up who then turned to running. Cy was a competitive mountain biker, until Shannon convinced him that running was the way to go. They both love the benefits that running brings, and train for several of the races that take place locally. They believe that supporting the local run community is important, as is encouraging people to choose an active lifestyle.

It’s why Play is a gold sponsor of the Interior Running Association, as well as the Dirty Feet Trail Running Series. Play also hosts demo runs and vendor days, as well as the Play Run Club, which is open to all levels of runners who meet on Wednesdays and Sundays. Run club info is posted on the Play Instagram page (Play_Kelowna) as well as on Strava (Play Run Club).

A welcome addition to the Okanagan, Play provides local fitness enthusiasts with a one-stop shop for everything they need to be active. Play also has an online store, so it’s convenient to “play” no matter where you live.

And that is really what the driving force was behind Play nine years ago. “We chose the name Play because that’s what running, training and hiking is to us,” says Shannon. “And continuing to play as adults is key for a happy, healthy life.”   

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