The Boyle District Chamber of Commerce held their first Moonlight Madness in the village’s Main Street area Dec. 7 after a three-year absence.
The festivities began with a Christmas tree lighting at 4 p.m. at the old village office, along with a kid’s lantern walk hosted by the Spray Park Group.
Chamber secretary Karen Keyes said the passport program that was put on this year was a great success.
“Lots of people picked one up and collected stamps at all participating businesses,” Keyes said. “What happens is at the end, any passport with all stamps collected are then entered into a draw for one of five $100 gift certificates to shop local.”
As well, she said that each business had a draw for their individual items as well.
“The winners of each one will be announced Dec. 11,” Keyes said.
Ellen Knowles, the chamber’s treasurer, said they were really happy with how things turned out.
“The lantern walk and the tree light-up went really well,” Knowles said. “Each of our merchants were happy with the response, and it’s always nice when we can invest in the community.”
She added that the Christmas lights this year were purchased by the chamber using funds from its membership.
“It’s great to put money back into the community,” Knowles said.
Village of Boyle Mayor Colin Derko said the chamber did a great job getting the people and businesses out to participate.
“There were lots of different specials and giveaways at each one,” Derko said. “What I really enjoyed was all the community spirit to help kick-off the Christmas season. There were people out from all age groups, from infants to some people past age 90. It just goes to show the small-town community spirit is alive and well.”
One of the activities families got to enjoy was the sleigh ride that began at Central Sales on Main Street, and covered the downtown core.
“We had a long line-up of people waiting to get on,” sleigh driver Melvin Nakonechny said. “This sleigh also took part in the recent Grey Cup parade in Edmonton as well, and it was lots of fun having the families take a ride through the community.”
Another activity was cookie decorating at the Boyle IDA.
“Lots of children came by to participate,” organizer Karen Mackenzie said. “They came in spurts and had lots of fun putting the icing and sprinkles on each one.”
Santa also showed up at Central Sales, where they were serving hot dogs to the community. Each kid got their picture taken while families continued with activities.
“It was a very busy night,” Taye Noyes said. “I was out enjoying the evening with my wife and three children, and we saw lots of people out and about. It was really fun.”
Conny Wlos, the owner of Country Bliss and Gifts, said it was an awesome event.
“The store was very busy,” Wlos said. “We had some sales going on, and we were offering 20 per cent off all Christmas items, as well as for toques, mittens, scarves and other items.”
Knowles said they hope to see this much success or more for next year’s event.
“Let’s hope Mother Nature co-operates once again next year,” she said.