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Westlock Light Up kicks off the Christmas season

Residents enjoy parade and festivities during two-day event Nov. 18-19

WESTLOCK — Hundreds of residents helped kick-off the holiday season for the 2022 Westlock Christmas Light up.

The two-day Christmas event Nov. 18-19 featured a parade, live music and late-night shopping on Friday, while there were family activities, crafts, the Little Elves workshop, cookie decorating, a live nativity scene and visits with Santa, among other festivities on Saturday.

One of the many parents out with their children enjoying the weekend was Nyssa Kneller, who was joined by her son Ian and daughter Rayna and said it “was a great event.”

“I’m all about the community event so it’s really nice to see everyone out and about, enjoying each other and the community,” said Kneller, noting they did cookie decorating at Kerri’s Café and also made a stop at the Little Elves workshop at the Rotary Spirit Center on Saturday. “I like how (the event) showcases all the local businesses and I love how all the teenagers are involved with volunteering. I think it’s really special getting everyone involved.”

Hundreds lined the streets Friday evening for the parade and festivities downtown, including late-night shopping and live music, while many also took in the Bethlehem Story as told through a live nativity at Westlock Gospel Chapel Saturday afternoon.

“It’s more than the story, it’s to get the feel of what it would have been like on the busy streets of Bethlehem 2,000 years ago,” said pastor Ken Stange, noting this was the third-consecutive year for the event and the first held in-person due to past COVID-19 restriction.

“It’s very exciting. It’s also exciting for us as a church family to do this,” said Stange. “Combining all the people in costume and all the people behind the scenes, there’s about 80 volunteers working together to make this happen. It’s wonderful to have people stop, talk, and visit and that’s what makes it feel like a community.”

Kristine Jean,