(File photo)

(File photo)

Ponoka Christmas festivities kick off this week

The holiday season will kick off in downtown Ponoka on Friday, Nov. 18, with the return of the Ponoka and District Chamber of Commerce’s annual Santa Claus Parade in conjunction with Almost Midnight Madness and the Town of Ponoka’s annual Christmas tree lighting festivities.

Santa Claus Parade

The Santa Claus Parade will roll through the downtown beginning at 5:30 p.m. The parade will feature colourful, holiday-themed floats decorated by local businesses and community groups. Watch for the Town of Ponoka’s float once again this year that will feature members of Town Council and festive Christmas decorations.

The parade will wind through downtown Ponoka along the following route beginning at the Ponoka Arena Complex (4410 54 Street):

• north along 54 Street;

• east down 46 Avenue;

• north on 50 Street;

• west on 51 Avenue;

• south on 51 Street; and

• west on 48 Avenue.

The Town of Ponoka will facilitate the parade by setting up temporary road closures along the parade route just before 5 p.m. The road closures will be removed once the parade ends.

To see a map of the parade route, go to www.ponoka.ca, under ‘Latest News and Notices.’

For those who cannot attend the Santa Claus parade in-person, there will also be a livestream available on the Town of Ponoka’s Facebook page.

Tree lighting ceremony

The Santa Claus parade will be followed immediately by the Town of Ponoka’s annual ‘Light Up Ponoka’ Christmas tree lighting ceremony at approximately 6:15 p.m. in the lot beside the old library building at 48 Avenue and 51 Street.

The tree lighting ceremony will feature greetings from Ponoka Mayor Kevin Ferguson and hot chocolate will also be served on site. The Town’s annual Light Up Ponoka festivities will also once again include Christmas decorations and lights throughout the downtown.

For those who cannot attend the tree lighting ceremony in-person, there will also be a livestream available on the Town of Ponoka’s Facebook page.

The Ponoka Community Market will also be welcoming visitors next door from 3 – 8 p.m. on Nov. 18. For more information, please visit the Ponoka Community Market Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Ponoka-Community-Market-675022879509030.

New Christmas tree planted downtown

Hulk Ventures donated a 25-foot spruce tree that has been planted in the lot beside the old library building at 48 Avenue and 51 Street. The spruce tree will now serve as the town’s official Christmas tree, and will be decorated and lit with colourful holiday lights during the tree lighting ceremony Nov. 18.

“This new Christmas tree will serve the community for years to come and will grow with us as our community grows,” said Andrew Jones, manager of Parks, Recreation and Facilities.

Other upcoming holiday festivities

Stay tuned for details about other holiday festivities in Ponoka over the coming weeks, including:

• Christmas light display at Lions Centennial Park;

• Community-wide Christmas lights tour;

• Ponoka Festival of Trees from Dec. 1 – 4 in support of the Ponoka and District Health Foundation. The town will be sponsoring the Family Fun Day on Saturday, December 2;

• The CP Holiday Train will roll into town once again on Thursday, Dec. 8, at 3:45 p.m.; and

• Christmas fireworks on Dec. 8, following the CP Holiday Train co-sponsored by the Town of Ponoka and Ponoka County. More details to come.

For more information about Almost Midnight Madness festivities, please visit the Ponoka chamber’s website at www.ponokachamber.ca or call 403-783-3888.

ChristmasTown of Ponoka

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