Hometown Christmas, a magical event

·2 min read

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in downtown Kincardine.

The annual Hometown Christmas event, a staple of past holiday shopping seasons, was held on Friday, Nov. 19 and welcomed residents eager to kick off Christmas celebrations and stoke some holiday spirit.

The blustery weather that rolled in earlier in the day disappeared, and hundreds upon hundreds of Kincardinites bundled up to walk Queen Street, and take part in the activities and joy the event offered.

Organizer and downtown development manager Rick Clarke was very pleased with the turnout for the event.

“Tonight’s huge turnout exceeded our expectations and just underscores how important it is to people that we provide these opportunities to have large gatherings in a safe, pedestrian-friendly environment,” said Clarke. “People are tired of being shut in, feeling isolated and want to socialize, meet and greet with family and friends.”

At 5 p.m., downtown merchants unveiled their window displays as part of the Big Reveal. Visitors walked up and down the main street, marveling at the colours, lights and creativity of the decorations. Along the way, a visit to the petting zoo, a ride on a horse drawn wagon and treats were enjoyed by many. Santa and nearly a dozen other characters, including downtown mascot, Blinky, strolled the downtown, handing out candy canes and waving to the little ones.

At 6 p.m., ooohs and ahhhs could be heard as the lights went on in Victoria Park. Thousands of lights, installed by municipal employees, lit up the gazebo, trees and bushes. Live music, courtesy of the Kincardine Community Singers, filled the air with the sounds of Christmas.

“It’s important that we acknowledge Travis Jackson from the Shoreline Radio, Kincardine Community Singers, Councillor Kennedy and the (Kincardine) Lions for helping us with our annual Lighting of the Park, but we also give a huge shout out to our Public Works and Parks staff who have been busy all week decorating the park and our downtown.”

Downtown merchants played a big part in the festivities. Besides decorating their windows, many stayed open late, offered special discounts and “no tax” sales.

“I expect our retailers will have significant sales tonight given the large number of people on the street but its only one purpose for Hometown Christmas,” said Clarke. “Primarily, our BIA members want to give back to the community this special festive experience for its support of our local businesses all year long.”

Tammy Schneider, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Kincardine Independent

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