After a full week of holiday-themed events, Nov. 22 will mark the official start of the Christmas season in Westlock.
Light Up Week is already in full swing across town, since the entire celebration began Nov. 17 with a chance to Skate with Santa at the Rotary Spirit Centre, but everything will culminate Friday when the parade gets going downtown at 6:15 p.m., which will follow its usual route through downtown.
Things will get going at 107 St. and 100 Ave. and go south three blocks, said organizer Benita Pedersen, who keeps the route short to accommodate for parking for the rest of the evening.
“Santa is our main event for the parade and people will also see magically lit up floats,” she said.
At Memorial Hall, starting at 5 p.m. and going until about 9 p.m., there will be a lasagna supper with fresh pie for dessert — with all proceeds going to the Hope Resource Centre.
A ham supper, hosted at the Westlock Legion, will take place just before the parade.
Memorial Hall will continue to be the main venue for events that evening. In the main room, organizers are putting together a family dance after the parade. The Westlock Ukrainian Dancers will have some representation at the dance, in full costume, to teach interested kids some of the basics of Ukrainian dance.
“We’ve never had this at Light Up before, this is special. It’s brand new.”
Also in the main room, others can participate in some cookie decorating with WJS.
Next door in the Elks Room, the Westlock Library will have a craft station for the kids. The snowball fights have also moved indoors to Memorial Hall for the evening, since some elves have decided to challenge kids with soft balls.
The Light Up committee has also added a special feature to pictures with Santa this year. Those interested can turn them into family Christmas cards on the spot, design their cards and order them for printing.
“It’s going to be so beautiful that you are going to want your entire family to take a photo with Santa Claus and then the pictures will be so perfect, you’re going to want to use them for Christmas cards.”
Not everything centres around little children, since the Army Cadets have put together air hockey, table tennis, indoor hockey and soccer for those ages 12-18 in the basement at the MacKenzie Building on Main Street, across from Home Hardware.
The parking lot behind Home Hardware will also be home to some ball hockey, and in the Westlock Aquatic Centre, a teen beach bash featuring retro video games is being sponsored by the Town of Westlock and FCSS.
For those who want some actual snow, and the feel of cold weather on their faces, dressing warmly is suitable enough for the free hayrides starting at Memorial Hall.
“Show your Christmas spirit by lighting up your place in Westlock,” urged Pedersen.