The community of Irricana is coming together again this year to host the Kids Christmas on Main Block Party, including activities such as face-painting, wagon rides, arts and crafts, street hockey games, and more.
The Dec. 1 event, which will run from 5 to 9 p.m. in various locations across town, is a real community effort, said event planner Cathryn Hagel.
“It's not one person doing it, it's a community pulling together and really showing what the Christmas spirit and the holiday spirit is about,” Hagel said. “It's about showing camaraderie and joy in being with each other.”
The event has been ongoing for a decade and participants hosting activities across Town have consistently shown up, she added.
Although there are always weather dependent events, businesses involved have helped out wherever they could.
A horse drawn wagon will bring families around to each event in Town, including a Christmas market hosted by the Irricana playschool at the Irricana Lions Community Hall, carolling, hot chocolate, and a bonfire at the Calvary Chapel, and kids crafts with Santa Claus arriving in a fire truck at the Irricana & Rural Municipal Library.
“You can get photos with Santa and all that stuff,” Hagel said. “Then a few other businesses are doing things up and down the street. We have street hockey going on at the [public works building] and the ladies club is handing out free hotdogs at the post office.”
A few more community groups will be doing crafts, a photo booth, and face painting at the Irricana Recreation centre.
The event provides a way for old and new community members to gather and meet each other as they celebrate the holiday season, Hagel noted.
“It gets to be so that everybody can get to know each other better and grow the community,” she said.
As part of an effort to foster Christmas cheer in time for the big event, the Town of Irricana will also be offering up “Kindness Kits” at the post office and library.
Kindness Kits are gift bags available for free to the community to be given to somebody as an act of kindness.
“It's there for anyone to take, the idea behind it is that times are tough and we do feel isolated in this world,” Hagel said. “This is just an extension of a warm hug from the Town to our community members.”
She added it’s something they can pay forward if they want and help someone out this season.