The reverse Christmas parade takes place on December 19th, 2020 in Cranbrook. It will feature many houses decorated with lights (like the one pictured), as well as other fun surprises along the way. (Barry Coulter file)

The reverse Christmas parade takes place on December 19th, 2020 in Cranbrook. It will feature many houses decorated with lights (like the one pictured), as well as other fun surprises along the way. (Barry Coulter file)

Connect Church to host reverse Christmas parade

The reverse parade allows families to take part from the comfort of their vehicles

2020 has been a tough year for so many people, but Connect Church in Cranbrook has set out to remedy that by bringing some joy and happiness to the community with a reverse Christmas parade.

Jennifer Spyksma is a director with Connect Church. She explained that a few weeks ago her and her fellow directors were discussing the current state of affairs during a meeting, when the idea sparked to host a reverse parade.

“We were all really feeling the heaviness of COVID,” she said. “We just heard that the Santa Claus Parade was cancelled and we thought how hard this year has been for so many people.

“That’s when I said, ‘we need some fun!’ the idea sparked out of wanting to bring joy and fun to the community, as well as wanting to serve the community.”

The reverse parade dubbed, ‘Shining Light Into the Darkness’ will take place on Saturday, December 19 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The route is available on mobile devices through the Google Maps app and anyone is free to drive the route at their leisure between these times. Houses will be decorated with lights and other holiday spectacles. There will also be opportunities to give back to the community.

Spyksma hopes the reverse parade will bring families together in a different way.

“You know, a lot of people have been spending a lot of time with their families and maybe they’re spending more time inside. Many of the typical Christmas events and activities have been cancelled this year. We hope this can bring families together and allow them to do something a little different.”

All of the event and route information is available on the ‘Connect Church Presents: Reverse Christmas Parade’ Facebook event page. Route maps are also available at Connect Church, via their mailbox.

READ MORE: Cranbrook Santa Claus parade cancelled

READ MORE: Physically distanced photos with Santa

“There will be many fun surprises along the way including some pop-ups from ‘famous’ Christmas characters,” she said. “There will be Christmas carols on the radio and an amazing prize for the best dressed house. There will also be a scavenger hunt for kids to participate in, with a number of prizes from local businesses.”

Spyksma says the event is following strict COVID-19 guidelines and everyone is asked to remain in their vehicles for the entirety of the route.

“The great thing is that there is no need to leave your vehicle,” she explained. “Everything is visual and non-contact. We ask that you stay in your car and only travel with the people in your household. This is definitely a family activity, but of course you can honk at your neighbours and friends when you drive past them.”

Spkysma wants to thank the community for their support and willingness to turn her idea into a reality.

“The community has responded in such a tremendous way,” Spyksma said. “I’m organizing it, but really it is the community who has made this happen. Local businesses and non-profits have reached out; I have volunteers calling to ask how they can help. We are certain that this evening will bring our community together to share in the Christmas spirit.”



corey.bullock@cranbrooktownsman.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
110 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Provincial health officers announced 1,005 new cases throughout B.C.

BGC Cranbrook will renovate a facility to relocate 24 existing spaces and add 24 new spaces with support from the Trust. Photo courtesy Columbia Basin Trust.
Grant funding to help create new childcare spaces in Cranbrook

Columbia Basin Trust providing $10,000 to BGC Cranbrook to help renovate new facility

Earlier this spring, the City of Cranbrook started positioning components of the Stormceptor system to carry storm runoff to Elizabeth Lake from the Innes Avenue neighbourhood. Photo submitted
Stormceptor will bring clean run-off to Elizabeth Lake

The City of Cranbrook is installing new infrastructure to handle the Innes Avenue neighbourhood, but go easy on Elizabeth lake

Interior Health nurses administer Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to seniors and care aids in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Kelowna Capital News)
69 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

The total number of cases in the region is now at 9,840 since the pandemic began

Kelowna General Hospital (File photo)
Interior Health hospitals not strained by rising COVID case counts

While provincial hospitalizations rise, health care systems in the B.C. Interior remain robust, say officials

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
RCMP intercept vehicle fleeing with infant taken from Kamloops hospital

The baby was at the hospital receiving life-saving care

Vancouver Police Const. Deepak Sood is under review by the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. after making comments to a harm reduction advocate Sunday, April 11. (Screen grab)
VIDEO: Vancouver officer convicted of uttering threats under watchdog review again

Const. Deepak Sood was recorded Sunday saying ‘I’ll smack you’ and ‘go back to selling drugs’ to a harm reduction advocate

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate persists, 1,005 new cases Friday

Hospitalization up to 425, six more virus-related deaths

Premier John Horgan receives a dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the pharmacy in James Bay Thrifty’s Foods in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. Premier John Horgan gets AstraZeneca shot, encourages others

27% of residents in B.C. have now been vaccinated against COVID-19

The Nautical Dog Cafe at Skaha marina is getting its patio ready in hopes Mother Nature will provide where provincial restrictions have taken away indoor dining. (Facebook)
‘A lot of instability’: B.C. restaurants in layoff limbo

As COVID-19 cases stay high, restaurants in British Columbia are closed to indoor dining

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Most Read