Sooke Santa Run to carry on this year, with some major changes

Sooke Santa Run to carry on this year, with some major changes
Sooke Fire Rescue Service
The Sooke Santa Run is still happening this COVID Christmas

The 27th annual Sooke Santa Run will still drive on this year, only with some major adjustments to help keep everyone safe amid the pandemic.

The well-loved tradition is presented by the Sooke Firefighter’s Association and IAFF Local 4851 and is set to start on Saturday, Dec. 12 at around 5 p.m.

“Thanks to the collaborative efforts of 40 firefighters and the community, much-needed donations are collected in support of the Sooke Christmas Bureau and local families in need,” said the Sooke District in a release on Thursday.

Decorated with bright and colourful Christmas lights and playing festive holiday music, four trucks loaded with physically-distanced Santa and helpers will be driving through neighbourhoods to spread holiday cheer.

Traditionally, the Santa Run helps volunteers gather cash and food donations while being a capstone of the firefighter’s annual Fill-a-Fire-Truck campaign.

This year, food donations are a no-go, and while contactless cash donations are accepted, Sooke is encouraging everyone to donate online.

“As the firetrucks make their way through neighbourhoods to spread holiday cheer and children peek through their windows, households carol from a safe distance, the Sooke spirit is sure to shine bright this Saturday,” said the municipality.

There will be four routes for Sooke residents to check out, along with music, firetruck sirens and lights. Residents are encouraged to come look at the trucks passing by, but to keep gatherings restricted to your household only.

“Step outside, while remaining physically distant from others, and wave, cheer, and sing a carol as Santa drives by!” encourages the district.

As of 1:45 p.m. on Thursday, the fundraiser has raised $3,535 of its $15,000 goal for the Sooke Firefighters Campaign. The target selected for a one-dollar donation per resident, according to Sooke.

There is lots of holiday giving going on in the community. There are several campaigns raising money to support the Sooke Food Bank.

So far, the Meanwhile in Sooke has raised more than $11,500, and the 10 000 Tonight Food Drive is doing an online auction, which closes at 9 p.m. on Friday.

Otter Point Dental is matching community donations towards a $2,000 campaign, Village Foods has made a $5,000 contribution and Western Foods is doubling cash donations through products.

“Of course, behind each of these campaigns are the residents of Sooke, the heart of our community,” said the district.

 More information on how to follow the trucks and share cheerful photos online can be found online.

Rebecca LawrenceRebecca Lawrence

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