Float preparations underway for Saturday’s Santa Claus Parade in Victoria

Float preparations underway for Saturday's Santa Claus Parade in Victoria
Power To Be spent Nov. 24 setting up their parade float for the 41st Annual Santa Claus Parade.

‘Twas the night before the Santa Claus Parade and all across town, groups were busy assembling floats to delight those who come down.

On Nov. 25, the 41st annual Santa Claus Parade will make its way through Victoria, which means organizations like Power To Be were assembling their floats.

“We’re probably going to be doing this for the better part of the middle of the day, two or three hours,” said Peter Carson, head of programs in Victoria for Power To Be.

“Then tomorrow, I come back and I have to set a few different things, just to make sure the electricity works. Clearly a canoe on a trailer doesn’t have like a wall socket to plug the lights into so you’ve got to set up a generator and a whole bunch of other stuff to to make to make it happen.”

Power To Be will be towing its nine-metre (29-foot) canoe decked out with lights and a Christmas tree. It is one of the 60 entries for the parade.

“It is going to be a beautiful day, no rain, no atmospheric rivers this year,” said Kelly Kurta, executive director of the Greater Victoria Festival Society, which organizes the parade.

“One of the things that these family-friendly free community events bring to our city is a bit of relief, a moment to breathe, and a time to reflect on our families and what matters most to us.”

There are a few new aspects of the parade this year. The Disability Resource Centre will host a live audio description at the accessible viewing area on Government and Belleville streets, Mustard Seed will be collecting donations as the charity of choice, and Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at the Hudson Holiday Plaza in the Victoria Public Market afterwards to take pictures by donation.

Mustard Seed will also be giving out hot chocolate and gluten free cookies by donation, which Fairmont Empress and Chateau Victoria handed out to them, and there will be cash boxes and places to make non-perishable food or warm clothing donations.

“Anything is appreciated. So this year as well, if you don’t want to bring non-perishables, bring socks,” said Janice James with Mustard Seed. “Bring socks, bring gloves, because in this cold weather, if you get wet feet and you’re living on the street, you don’t have a place to wash or dry your clothing, then you need a new pair of socks. So we go through a ton of socks.”

For anyone who doesn’t want to brave the forecasted 2°C temperatures to view the parade in person, CHEK News will be broadcasting the parade so it can be watched from the comfort of your home.

The parade will air live on CHEK News, and can be streamed on CHEK+ and CHEK’s YouTube channel with hosts Stacy Ross and Paul Haysom. Ed and Jeff from The Upside will also be there.

In person, the parade route will kick off at 5:20 p.m. at Government and Belleville streets before floats move north along Government, east on Humbolt Street and north on Douglas Street, wrapping up outside the Victoria Public Market at 1701 Douglas St.

READ PREVIOUS: Peninsula Co-op Santa Claus Parade, ‘largest nighttime parade in Canada,’ lights up Victoria Saturday

-With files from CHEK’s Mackenzie Read and Ethan Morneau

Laura BroughamLaura Brougham

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