Tree festival kicks off holiday season in Ladner

The holiday season kicks off in Ladner Village next Thursday with the sixth annual Christmas Tree Festival.

The family event, presented by the Ladner Business Association, runs from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 22 at the corner of 48th Avenue and Delta Street.

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This year’s event promises lots of fun for everyone and is the perfect way to get in the Christmas spirit and share in the joy of the season with the whole community.

“The festival is about family traditions and bringing the community together to kick off the Christmas season,” said LBA president Jill McKnight.

McKnight said they are planning several new kids’ activities along with several of the favourties from last year including gingerbread cookie decorating for children age’s two to 12, the colouring contest and letters to Santa.

Letters to Santa can be dropped off in the special mailbox set up just for the festival and children can also pen their letters to Santa that night. All letters will be sent directly to Santa at the North Pole.

Alex Whitaker, who brings his experience from performing at the Richmond pumpkin festival, is this year’s musical guest.

There is also a gingerbread house contest in which the public will choose the winner.

“Various businesses have been working very hard to come up with some great looking gingerbread houses,” said McKnight. “This has become a highlight event and a bit of a fun rivalry between the businesses, but all in good spirit.”

McKnight said this year’s contest will have the largest number of businesses entered, with many new businesses joining the festivities.

The winner of the contest will be chosen that night based on the highest number of votes from the public.

Delta South MLA Ian Paton’s office will be offering complimentary hot chocolate, Delta MP Carla Qualtrough’s office will be offering a children’s craft station and the LBA barbecue concession will be serving up hot dogs available for purchase.

Besides the volunteers, McKnight said the LBA could not host the event without the generous support from their sponsors, in particular, their presenting sponsor the Port of Vancouver.

The festival will end with the traditional lighting of the Christmas tree at 7:15 p.m. with Santa’s arrival just minutes before.

“Last year our attendance was well over 2,000 people and we look forward to further growth this year,” added McKnight. “The idea is that we are trying to give multiple experiences to everyone who attends. We are all really excited to welcome the community to this year’s festival.”

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