INNISFAIL – It will be a huge celebratory day for Innisfail on Nov. 19.
The countdown begins for Christmas.
In fact, the downtown celebration is called the Innisfail Countdown to Christmas. It runs the same day as the downtown community tree lighting and the opening day of the Festival of Trees at the Innisfail Library/Learning Centre.
“It’s like a big shebang,” said Karen Bradbury, the town's community and social development coordinator. “Ours kind of goes right in with all of that. It is going to be a big night to launch Innisfail Christmas stuff.”
The Nov. 19 countdown to the big day on Dec. 25 begins at 5 p.m. at the north end of the parking lot at the Innisfail Royal Canadian Legion.
This is where the town is hosting a free Christmas-themed drive-in festival for the entire community.
“They come and we’re going to feed them individually-wrapped slices of pizza, bottled water and we’re going to have candy bags and resource bags because we also want to make sure people have the resources and any information they need for Christmas,” said Bradbury, adding the event will have a warming station for the many volunteers helping citizens who arrive in their vehicles.
“There will also be fun in-car games played with many great prizes to be won.”
She also emphasized there will be no charge for any family or individual who arrives at the drive-in festival. “No cost. We’re just encouraging vehicles to bring a non-perishable item for the food bank,” said Bradbury.
However, Bradbury is requesting citizens to register their vehicles, along with the number of people attending, by noon on Friday, Nov. 12. Citizens are asked to register by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The drive-in festival runs until 7 p.m. but at 6:30 p.m. the event will move to the Cenotaph for the annual community tree lighting. Volunteers will be serving hot chocolate and individually wrapped cookies.
“We’re just hoping to make all this a fun community event,” said Bradbury.