Editor's note: This article has been updated from the original to include new information on events from the Innisfail & District Chamber of Commerce
INNISFAIL – The joy of the coming Christmas will soon be felt amidst bustling energy on Main Street and beyond as the annual Hometown Christmas celebration returns.
This year’s annual all-day event on Dec. 4 was cancelled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“One hundred per cent. Everybody is looking forward to it coming back. It’s a community favourite having Hometown Christmas. It gets everybody out and into the Christmas spirit,” said Carla Gabert, the executive director of the Innisfail District Chamber of Commerce, which is the hosting the event in partnership with the Town of Innisfail, the Innisfail Royal Canadian Legion and the Innisfail Lions Club.
Gabert noted the date of the annual event is now later than it was in previous years.
“We moved it there last year but we were unable to have it in 2020, so it’s our new time for Hometown Christmas,” she said. “We changed up some of our Christmas programming and it allowed us to move Hometown Christmas closer to Christmas.”
She said Hometown Christmas is “great opportunity” to bring the entire community together, and an equally great way to support the Chamber’s Shop LOCAL campaign.
“And there are activities throughout the day for the young and the young at heart but not only that there are customer appreciation days going on, as well as customer specials with different businesses throughout, and horse-drawn sleigh rides, Santa Claus, and all kinds of things,” said Gabert, noting there is no fee for any event but organizers are collecting food bank donations.
She’s encouraging citizens to drop by the many businesses offering great deals, and also to enjoy a free coffee, hot chocolate and snacks.
The Farmers Market, which is a chamber of commerce initiative like the successful Market On Main during the summer, will go again at the Royal Canadian Legion.
Innisfail Public Library is handing cookie decorating kits out all week or on Saturday from 10:30 to 2:30 p.m. The horse drawn wagon rides are running from the Fire Hall to the legion from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. There has not been anything planned for the cenotaph, neither singing or tree lighting.For citizens wanting a unique pre-Christmas entertainment, the Innisfail Aquatic Centre is hosting an Outdoor Movie Night, where the film Mickey’s Christmas Carol will be featured at 7 p.m. just west at the ball diamonds.
There will be free warm drinks for folks as they bundle up in their chairs to watch the free family show.
“We look forward to seeing everybody out on December 4 at Hometown Christmas, and we want to thank everyone for shopping local,” said Gabert.