Rayne Hunter met Santalast year.

Christmas and charity together

This year’s LEC consumer trade show includes charitable aspects as well as cooking shows and demos.

No one wants to think Christmas is right around the corner (don’t worry it’s not – there are still 43 days) but there is nothing wrong with getting into the spirit and doing some early shopping, especially when there are some great ways to give to others at the same time.

The second annual The Christmas Show at the Langley Events Centre is set for this weekend with piles of things to see, do, and enjoy according to show producer, Jamie Gartner. There will be more than 200 exhibitors showcasing their items. Exhibitor space sold out early and Gartner thinks it’s due to where the show is held.

“I think location has a big thing to do with it,” she said. “Langley doesn’t have anything [else] like this. It’s even in walking distance for some people.”

For those who aren’t walking, parking is free all three days while the show is open: Friday, Nov. 13 from 5 to 9 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 14 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m, and Sunday, Nov. 15 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Yum

New to the show this year is the Mr. Mom’s cooking stage with a wide range of demos.

“We have David Jorge coming from Masterchef Canada,” Gartner noted. “Masterchef is a draw for the [Friday] evening [opening of the show].”

Not sure if Friday is the right day to attend? A chance at a $2,500 gift card from Mr. Mom could change that. Plus, the first 100 people in the show on Friday receive a free gift.

One of the exhibitors is Craftworks Society, a non-profit organization that sells crafts hand-made by adults with disabilities and/or mental illnesses to earn a supplemental income and receive a form of craft-therapy, noted the society’s manager, Kaytee Kilgour.

“We have a huge crew of volunteers who help sell the crafts to help fund the home-bound adult crafters,” Kilgour said. “We tailor the craft to the individual based on their ability.”

Craftworks will have more than 300 products at the show including seasonal ornaments, crafts, and early education products and aids. Some crafters create professional-quality items that Kilgour said rival even the best on the market.

New products for 2015 include three ornaments: Scottie dog, fox, and Rudolph.

“We launched a line of 12 ornaments last year,” Kilgour explained. “The Canada goose was sold through the Langley museum. That’s what led to the connection to the Langley community.”

Say cheese

While photos with Santa may be expected, here, too, is a nice twist. Each child who brings a donation item for the Langley Food Bank will receive a professional photo with Santa or Queen Elsa from Frozen.

Tykes Bykes will be giving away four bikes over the three day event to lucky kids at the show, and look for balloon artists and other kids’ activities as well.

“There’s lots of kid-oriented stuff,” noted Gartner.

Plus, for those who want to ensure a good Christmas for animals as well as humans, you’ll find the Grinch’s dog Max on site for selfie picture taking by donation.

“We actually have a Grinch scarecrow with his dog,” Gartner said. “We’re doing Paws 4 a Cause donations as well. It’s nice to have the donations coming in.”

For those who are interested in a “hands-on” Christmas, there are plenty of demos to take in said Gartner.

There will be experts showcasing how to make holiday wreaths, decorate a door, and create a festive bird feeder among other crafts.

Admission is $10, $7 for seniors and youth 14 to 16, children 13 and younger are free. A hand stamp allows attendees to pay once and go as much as they like.

 

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