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Meet Aidan Mayes. Aidan was born and raised here in Penticton! She is extremely passionate about music and loves to share the art with her community.
Where are you from and how long have you lived in Penticton?
Born & raised in this beautiful city! I have lived in Vancouver, Victoria & Montreal...but my heart belongs to Penticton, so happy to call her home!
Who is your favourite person to spend time with and why?
My handsome man, Jordan Ash! He’s my best friend and partner in fun and also, he’s the most incredible chef...our time together usually consists of eating delicious food...which I am a huge fan of!
What is your favourite local store in Penticton and why?
Beadz! And Beyond on Westminister Ave. It’s the most unique and eclectic store...a place to buy sparkly crystal treasures and a place to let your creativity be wild! My amazing step-mom, Maureen Mayes is the owner and she has been sharing her jewelry.
Describe yourself in one word.
If you could go anywhere in the world right at this moment where would you go and why?
I can go anywhere! Next trip planned is to Spain!!! For their music, dance, and food!
What is your favourite activity in Penticton?
I love going to and performing at the Penticton Downtown market on Saturdays all summer long!
What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
I do embarrassing things a lot to make my students feel less self-conscious...haha! But last night, when I was out for dinner at Salty’s and thought I’d lost my phone, but it was on the table right in front of me, doh?! Embarrassing!
What is the most inspiring thing that has happened to you?
I feel pretty privileged that my life has a lot of inspiring moments...whether by an encounter with an audience member at a show that was touched by a song rendition or seeing a student accomplish a goal or creating a gorgeous harmony with my voice mate, Mandy Cole! But recently, my long time student (in fact she was my first student ever, 9 years ago) Josephine Kay decided she wanted to follow the same post-secondary path that I followed. She auditioned for the Canadian College of Performing Arts and got accepted!!! She just finished her first grueling and exciting year. I went down to Victoria last month to witness her year end production of West Side Story at the MacPherson Playhouse!!! It was a stunning production and so nostalgic for me to have come full circle. I am one proud teacher and alumni of CCPA!
Tell us your favourite childhood memory.
My big sister, the incredible Sarah Mayes, would have to be included in this answer because we had a lot of great memories growing up together. We loved playing ‘bank machine’...haha, a game we made up where we drew a picture of a bank machine with slots for money and a bank card on a huge piece of cardboard paper. We used the big awesome Poloconomy money! Remember that game? Better than Monopoly! (Side note: I love board games.) One of us would pretend to be the robot behind the bank giving out money and the other would be making a request! We were obsessed about this game, haha...I was always convincing Sarah to play some crazy game and she was usually a very good sport!
Where do you volunteer or give back to in the community?
I am a believer in the wonderful support made by Quota International to raise money for hearing impaired persons and women in need. My Mom, Maureen Taylor, has been enthusiastically involved for 35 years in this service club and recently was presented the Canada Region 1 ''Volunteer of the Year" for her service and dedication both locally and around the world. Whenever I can, I perform for their functions! A lot of people don’t know that I had a serious hearing impairment as a child and Quota’s donations helped purchase a machine for early detection of hearing impairment in children and I was able to have a surgery that has made music possible. I doubt I would be a singer let alone a teacher without this amazing group of ladies and my mom!
If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
Where would you sneak away to in Penticton to spend some time alone?
I love the Purple Basil beach...haha, I know that’s not the actual name but you know, the beach by the Marina?! It’s down the street from my house and it’s just pure bliss. I love journaling or strumming my ukulele with the soft waves in the background!
Where would you like to see positive change in Penticton and why?
I’d love to see more selection of awesome restaurants and places to hang out downtown preferably with LIVE music, beautiful decor and an atmosphere that feels a bit more worldly! I think Kelowna’s downtown vibe is happening and ours is sadly limited...but we have so much potential!!! Don’t get me wrong, there are some exciting places in town like The Cannery, Bad Tattoo, Nest & Nectar, Mike Zero, Salty’s, Theo’s, Vallarta Grill, Dream Cafe ...I just want more, without the big city madness, haha!
What do you think makes Penticton great?
The people and the location between two lakes and mountains! Every day I wake up, I am grateful to live here! I’ve done a lot of travelling over the past 4 years, been to 8 countries...and we have it all! Beauty, safety, opportunity, culture and more!
What are 3 things on your bucket list?
Well, I’ve been chipping away at this list, so it’s not very long these days. I would say that I want to learn to speak Spanish fluently (currently taking lessons with Jordy), see the pyramids in Egypt, make a new record...oh and I have a fourth, learn to Flamenco dance (also taking private lessons)!
Tell us something that not everyone may know about you.
I love doing laundry.
How do people connect with you, personally, through social media? (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.)
Facebook & Instagram
What is the name of your business/organization?
Aidan Mayes School Of Music
Why did you get into/start this business?
I love making music and feel it is my calling, I love children and have always connected with them and I love Penticton...so I wanted to create a career that allowed me to live here, share my passion for music and work with children (at any age)!
What is the goal of your business?
To inspire a love of music and creativity and help guide anyone to find their voice.
What has been your biggest struggle either at work or in life?
I can’t meet the demand for music lessons...I have requests almost every day from people looking for lessons...it’s a bittersweet problem to have. I have a waitlist though, and hope to work with as many children in our community as possible in time!
If you could start all over again would you do things the same or would things be different?
I wouldn’t change a thing.
What do you always find yourself saying?
"Suffer or embrace...it’s our choice."
Tell us your best piece of life advice.
The above-mentioned statement (:
If you could spend one whole day with anyone in the world who is currently alive, who would you select?
My Dad! He’s just the best. And he’s one of my most favourite humans. On this whole day together, we would ride our mountain bikes up Campbell’s mountain and talk about life and have a Starbucks and solve all the world’s problems. I’d play him some Joni Mitchell covers and we would reminisce about the old ol’ days!
Why do you think it is important to shop locally?
If we stop shopping local, our town will become a bunch of cloned boxed stores with no heart or soul...I try to shop and support local as much as I possibly can because they are the pulse of our city!
What has been your proudest accomplishment?
Opening my Music School!
Give someone you think that deserves it a shout out and explain why!
I celebrate Jessica Singleton! She is an extremely talented and inspiring youth in our community! I have had the pleasure of witnessing her blossom into such a moving songbird...I am very proud of her and know she will accomplish incredible things!
My choice for the PentictonNow In Focus spotlight is:
Some general comments I would like to share are:
I feel like this would be the perfect platform to give a couple more loving shout outs to some very important people in my life!!! Firstly, Mandy Levant, my voice mate...she’s doing incredibly exciting things teaching music to the kids at Wiltse and Parkway Elementary as well as kicking butt as the lead singer of the Rock group, Jack & Jill! Way to go Mandy!!!
Zara & Taras Kinash are my dearest friends and their knowledge of real estate and wine and good music is impressive and inspiring!!! If you need to buy or sell a house, Taras is the man!!!
Oranj Fitness, where my sister Sarah teaches and manages, this place is the oasis of health and wellness with awesome classes to keep your body happy...such a special place!!! Go there!!!
Flambé Catering ❤️ That’s all I need to say!!!
I know I could mention so many more amazing places and people...but I’ll give someone else a chance! Thank you for the opportunity to say whatever my heart wanted (: Peace and love, ya’ll! See you at a show this summer, come say HI!
We encourage you to leave your comments and words of support below and submit your own nomination by emailing InFocus@PentictonNow.com. You are also welcome to submit a form of your own by clicking HERE.
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. Thank you, Penticton!