Santa Claus is set to make the rounds in several West Shore neighbourhoods this month, bringing holiday cheer and collecting donations for the Goldstream Food Bank Society.
His first stop this season comes Saturday (Dec. 11) is the Town of View Royal, where local firefighters association president Doug Chamberlain said the department will send four trucks into the community between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to help Santa get around.
“Non-perishable food, cash, whatever people can donate,” Chamberlain said. “We’ll be blasting our sirens and playing music. We are good and loud so people can hear us coming.”
The event returns for the first time in over a year, after public health restrictions pressed pause on it earlier in the pandemic. Some elements of the event, such as hot chocolate hand-outs at the fire hall, won’t be featured this year due to remaining restrictions, Chamberlain said, but that won’t stop firefighters from driving down each and every street in the community.
”It’s amazing. It’s a great time of year to start giving back again and start getting things somewhat back to normal,” he said. “We like to be part of the community and help it support everybody else.”
Elsewhere on the West Shore, the fire departments of Langford and Colwood have confirmed when Santa will be join them in their communities, while Metchosin and Highlands have yet to confirm the man i n red’s arrival time.
Colwood Fire Rescue is set to chauffeur Saint Nick through the community on Sunday, Dec. 19 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Acting Fire Chief Greg Chow said fire trucks will drive down as many Colwood streets as possible, but noted they may not be able to reach all of them.
He encourages residents looking to make a donation to flag down the trucks once they spot them with their lights flashing and sirens blaring, or if they’d like to receive a candy cane and see the fire trucks up close.
Langford Fire Rescue Chief Chris Aubrey said due to the pandemic, they won’t be collecting donations this year, but will still be driving through the community on Christmas Eve to spread holiday cheer.
The department will also be helping deliver hampers for Santas Anonymous, he said, and is in the process of finalizing when they will be doing the same with the Goldstream Food Bank Society.