With multiple floats, two marching bands, hot chocolate, and Jolly Old St. Nick all in one place, this year’s Sooke Santa Parade is sure to get you in the holiday spirit.
The parade will begin at 5 pm on Sunday, Nov. 26 at Sooke Elementary, and finish approximately half an hour later near Eustace Road.
Lorne Christensen, co-chair of the Lions and an organizer of the event, said this year the parade will have two bands marching: the Saanich Peninsula Pipe Band, and The Naden Band of the Royal Canadian Army.
This is the first time The Naden Band, which is a military band made up of 35 professional musicians whose main role within the Royal Canadian Navy is to support naval operations, ceremonial events, and generate public awareness, has participated in the parade.
This will be the second year the Sooke Lions have hosted the annual event, and tons of volunteers from the Lions, Lionesses, and Harbourside Lions are all going to be in attendance to help make sure the parade runs smoothly.
However, this year, approximately 40 students at EMCS have stepped forward and organized the after-parade festivities, in which the whole community is invited to the Evergreen Centre to enjoy live music, activities, baking and beverages.
Alana Gibb, an EMCS student and one of the organizers of the festivities, said this year they will also have activities for children taking place prior to the parade.
“Personally, I am very excited to have all the children and parents out at the event enjoying themselves. It’s a great way for the community to connect and for people to mingle,” said Gibb. “I am an avid lover of Christmas and by doing this event I hope to spread the Christmas spirit to every person who participates or comes to enjoy the evening.”
Christensen agreed and said he is looking forward to the event because it sets the season and gets everyone in the mood for the holidays.
“If the weather cooperates it’s going to be a really great day and a nice parade,” he said.