There is no snow on the ground, however Morinville’s quaint Main Street will shortly look like a picture-perfect Hallmark card.
For more than two decades, the charming town has transformed into a festive wonderland each holiday season putting smiles on faces as it illuminates the darkness with Lite Up the Nite Christmas Festival.
Taking place November 24 to 26, the three-day festivities are filled with community activities designed to spark seasonal enthusiasm among families, friends, and neighbours.
“With the weather so mild, we expect a lot of people will come out to kick off the holiday season. And this event always spikes volunteer spirit to organize this beautiful, free event for the community,” said Kathleen Ducharme, events and programs coordinator.
Throughout the weekend, there will be tons of activities for every age. Musée Morinville Museum is giving out pick-up kits to make a tree ornament while No Frills and Sobeys are hosting the annual Fill a Truck campaign.
Kicking off the event on Friday is the Lite Up the Nite Dance Party at Morinville Community Cultural Centre starting at 6:30 p.m. Guests are encouraged to dress in Christmas jammies and sweaters, and the engaging DJ Mike spins today’s popular hits. McDonalds is the sponsor providing free glow sticks, tattoos, and a holiday photo booth. Tickets are available through the centre.
Saturday is the weekend highlight with a Festive Family Festival from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the centre. It’s an opportunity for kids to take a photo with Santa and write a postcard to the man in red. There’s cookie decorating, craft making, balloon making and face painting.
This event also features performances. The Morinville Minstrels carol at 10:20 a.m. while Dallas Arcand, three-time world champion hoop dancer is booked at 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Pianist Riley Quinn tickles the ivories at 11:45 a.m. and the Movement Dance Studio shakes up the dust with their finest dancers at 1:15 p.m.
But the event everyone looks forward to is the Saturday night Santa Claus Parade at 5:30 p.m. It stops in front of St. Jean Baptiste Park for the official Lite Up the Park ceremony that illuminates the square with Christmas cheer. Following at 7:30 p.m. is the spectacular fireworks show at Notre Dame Park.
“Morinville is so flat, you can see the fireworks from anywhere.”
The entire festival is free. A complete schedule of activities is available at morinville.ca.