Folks in Esquimalt weren’t in a rush to get out of their pyjamas Sunday morning – instead they stayed warm in their fuzzies and took to the frosty streets for the third annual Pyjama Prance.
A crowd gathered outside Esquimalt United Church stretching and gearing up for the two- and five-kilometre prance, organized by Colette Scrimgeour and benefiting the Rainbow Kitchen next door.
“We like to make this a family-friendly event,” Scrimgeour said from under the hood of her peacock onesie. Previous years have seen participants aged from two and-a-half months old all the way up to 87.
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Esquimalt resident Andrew Gage and his daughter Rebecca Wolf Gage, dressed as Santa and a reindeer, warmed up 234 prancers with a rendition of holiday songs on their violins.
As they crossed the finish line, each prancer received a medal, homemade by Scrimgeour from local pine, spruce and fir. “Everyone who finishes gets a medal, because everyone’s a winner today,” she said.
And everyone warmed up after touring the Township with a pancake breakfast put on by the Esquimalt Lions Club.
Participants were asked to make a suggested donation of $10 or five items of food. “A lot of people end up bringing both,” Scrimgeour said. “The Rainbow Kitchen gives us a shopping list and then I send that out.”
At last tally, this year’s Pyjama Prance had raised $1,738 (up from last year) and donated food items – including a turkey – weighed in at 842 lbs.
“This year the amount of sponsorship from the community and from major businesses was amazing,” Scrimgeour said. “It’s just phenomenal.”