The official Steveston Santa Claus Parade will return on Christmas Eve after a four-year hiatus due to the pandemic.
To make up for the absence of the parade and to keep the spirit of the event alive, over the past three years, Alex Sagert of Steveston Sound & Stage rented a trailer for his pickup truck and drove the parade route around Steveston, displaying a Santa decoration and collecting food bank donations.
But this year, the Richmond Firefighters Charitable Society, which runs the parade, wanted to bring back the 45-year-long tradition to the village.
Sagert stepped up as one of the lead organizers of the event to give back to the community.
Starting at 6 p.m. on Dec. 24, Santa and his friends will start their parade at Fourth Avenue and Regent Street.
From there, they will head south in a zig-zag pattern before ending at Seventh Avenue near Garry Point Park.
Sagert said the parade usually lasts between 60 and 90 minutes. The complete route can be viewed online.
This year, the City of Richmond is providing a hay wagon.
In the past, Sagert said people served hot chocolate in the driveways.
“Maybe new neighbours that moved in during COVID, they (can) come out (and) go ‘What the heck’s going on’ and (can) start meeting new neighbours and maybe get that sense of community back because (during) COVID, everyone was sheltered in place, so no one could really talk to anyone and meet new people.”
The parade will also collect monetary donations for the Richmond Food Bank and the Richmond firefighters charitable fund, Sagert said.
Food donations will also be accepted for the food bank.
The organizing team is also looking for volunteers to help with the parade.
“We are also looking to see if local retailers want to be involved and have their banners and Christmas lights (up),” Sagert added. “We’re just trying to really involve the merchants in the village, too, and … get that sense of community going again.”
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