By Alejandra Pulido-Guzman - Lethbridge Herald on December 13, 2023.
The Nord-Bridge Seniors Centre will hold its fourth annual Winter Wonderland Friday afternoon, showcasing more than 50 Christmas trees to bring some holiday cheer to those who attend.
Program coordinator Ashley Kern told the Herald Monday the event continues to expand and they are excited to welcome members of the community to the centre to enjoy it.
“To get into the event on Friday you just have to bring a non-perishable food item to the front doors,” said Kern.
She said the items collected will be donated to the Interfaith Food Bank, along with a number of the trees on display. Kern added that some of the trees were donated by members, while others were in storage from previous years.
“We donate approximately half of them to the Interfaith Food Bank and then they give them to those less fortunate, and all of the non-perishable food items go to them, as well,” said Kern.
The event will attendees an opportunity to not only enjoy the fully decorated trees, but also free hot chocolate and hot apple cider, musical entertainment and pictures with Santa for $5.
“They can walk through the centre to check out the trees in our main corridor and upper hallway, while listening to some Christmas carols,” said Kern.
She said the Winter Wonderland event started in 2019 as a way of giving Nord-Bridge members an opportunity to take part in a winter event, have a reason to socialize and bring some joy into their lives during the holiday season, which can be a lonely time for some seniors.
“We wanted to do a holiday kind of festivity for our members because a lot of them don’t live in their houses anymore or they live in apartments and they don’t put up the tree anymore. Maybe their families are not around so we wanted to share the festive spirit,” said Kern.
When it comes to setting up all the trees and added decorations around the centre, Kern said it used to take the staff almost a month to set up, but now with the help of multiple volunteers the job takes about a week.
“We have a lot of volunteers, more community members helping out. We had students from Winston Churchill High School come over and help, we had Cornerstone Funeral Home staff come and help, so there’s more community volunteers and our volunteers as well,” said Kern.
Winter Wonderland runs Friday from 1 to 3:30 p.m. at Nord-Bridge Seniors Centre located at 1904 13 Avenue North.
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