There’s much to squeeze into just two hours of holiday merriment unfolding in Brookswood on Friday evening.
Brookswood Village Merchants Association is able to return with a slightly modified Night of Lights festival this year, and director Emma Stewart said shop owners and residents alike are excited for a chance to come together again.
Last year’s festivities, like most events, was cancelled due to the pandemic. And this year’s will be a little different than usual with a number of COVID safety protocols in place, including a larger venue to allow more space between activities, and one route in and one route out, to help discourage large gatherings.
The longstanding free neighbourhood Christmas party will feature a number of activity stations for children (including letters to Santa and a hockey booth), free food samplings, raffles, giveaways, and selfie photo stations, plus the ceremonial treelighting will once again cap off the evening, Stewart explained.
With the festivities running from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Brookswood commercial sector (200th Street near 40th and 41st Avenues), the treelighting is expected to happen close to 7:30 – just after the raffle draws.
There are two raffles organized this year, one being an adult-only draw sponsored by the soon-to-open Brookswood Brewery and Festina Lente Estate Winery on 16th Avenue.
The hope from this year’s raffles is to raise enough money for a new Christmas tree, Stewart explained.
“The [existing] tree is a little sad this year,” she said, noting it appears to be dying.
But the merchant association is raising money at this year’s Night of Lights that will go towards the purchase of a 20-foot-tall replacement they hope to offer the mall owners in time for the 2022 event.
In the meantime, Stewart said the lights have been hung on the existing tree and everything is set for Friday’s family-oriented festivities.
“All in all, there isn’t too much new. It’s just bigger and more people involved,” she said.
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