Christmas

FILE - Robin Pecknold of the Fleet Foxes performs at the Coachella Music & Arts Festival on April 14, 2018, in Indio, Calif. The Fleet Foxes song “White Winter Hymnal,” written by Pecknold, and released in 2008, has become a modern holiday standard, sung by children’s choirs in countless school assemblies. (Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP, File)

Red snow? Song becomes a most unexpected modern standard for the holidays

Songwriter surprised at how ‘White Winter Hymnal’ has turned into a Christmas staple

FILE - Robin Pecknold of the Fleet Foxes performs at the Coachella Music & Arts Festival on April 14, 2018, in Indio, Calif. The Fleet Foxes song “White Winter Hymnal,” written by Pecknold, and released in 2008, has become a modern holiday standard, sung by children’s choirs in countless school assemblies. (Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP, File)
(L-R) Les Folles Jambettes’ Vanessa Reyes-Golding, Sarah Leslie and Melanie Shenstone pose for a photo next to a family of snow people displayed at a home on 17th Avenue, near the intersection of 77th Avenue on Saturday, Dec. 18. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Grand Forks’ Can Can dancers trot out Christmas flash mobs

City residents with amazing Christmas displays were treated to the surprise dances

(L-R) Les Folles Jambettes’ Vanessa Reyes-Golding, Sarah Leslie and Melanie Shenstone pose for a photo next to a family of snow people displayed at a home on 17th Avenue, near the intersection of 77th Avenue on Saturday, Dec. 18. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Lego has gone through considerable changes over the years. When was this toy introduced? (LEGO via AP)

QUIZ: How much do you know about toys and games?

From long-lasting traditions to fads, there’s a lot of history to play and recreation.

Lego has gone through considerable changes over the years. When was this toy introduced? (LEGO via AP)
The SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program provides gifts for local children and youth in low-income families, so they may find something special under the tree on Christmas morning. (Submitted photo)
The SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program provides gifts for local children and youth in low-income families, so they may find something special under the tree on Christmas morning. (Submitted photo)
The SOS Thrift Shop truck was reported stolen in Parksville on Dec. 16, 2021. (SOS Facebook photo)

Grinch alert: SOS Thrift Shop truck reported stolen in Parksville

Organization busy collecting donations to make Christmas brighter for PQB residents

The SOS Thrift Shop truck was reported stolen in Parksville on Dec. 16, 2021. (SOS Facebook photo)
RCMP police dog handlers Cpl. Dean Muir, left, and Const. Matthew Tomasson show off a blanket crocheted for police service dog Herc. (Photo submitted)

Vancouver Island woman crochets police dogs blankets for Christmas

Woman who loves to crochet creates blankets for all four of Nanaimo RCMP’s police service dogs

RCMP police dog handlers Cpl. Dean Muir, left, and Const. Matthew Tomasson show off a blanket crocheted for police service dog Herc. (Photo submitted)
The SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program is helping make sure local children and youth feel special this Christmas by providing new gifts donated by the community. SOS is halfway to its goal of raising $200,000 to provide grocery store gift cards for local families and individuals in need. (Submitted photo)

SOS helps Parksville Qualicum Beach children feel special at Christmas

Donations still sought as group aims to raise $200K

The SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program is helping make sure local children and youth feel special this Christmas by providing new gifts donated by the community. SOS is halfway to its goal of raising $200,000 to provide grocery store gift cards for local families and individuals in need. (Submitted photo)
Folks enjoying a wagon ride during the ‘Christmas on the Farm’ event in 2019. Last year’s event was cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions, but is ready to go again for 2021 with COVID safety regulations in place. (Submitted photo)

‘Christmas on the Farm’ returns for 2021 at Little Qualicum Cheeseworks

Popular family event will be held on Saturday, Dec. 18, from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Folks enjoying a wagon ride during the ‘Christmas on the Farm’ event in 2019. Last year’s event was cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions, but is ready to go again for 2021 with COVID safety regulations in place. (Submitted photo)
The Island Brass Quintet. (Submitted photo)

Oceanside Folk Roots Club celebrates Christmas with Island Brass Quintet

Performance includes a reading of ‘A Child’s Christmas in Wales’

The Island Brass Quintet. (Submitted photo)
People dressed in Santa Claus costumes take part in Christmas run in Milan, Italy, Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

Bah! Humbug! Italian bishop apologizes for telling kids Santa doesn’t exist

A Roman Catholic diocese in Sicily publicly apologized to outraged parents after…

People dressed in Santa Claus costumes take part in Christmas run in Milan, Italy, Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
Catherine Crewe of Fernie with the card that she and Nancy Nester of Invermere have been sending back and forth to each other since 1964. Pictured here in 2021. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

60 years of good wishes: Two long-time Kootenay penpals keep a Christmas tradition alive

Catherine Crewe of Fernie, and Nancy Nester of Invermere have been sending the same card back and forth to each other since they were both five years old

Catherine Crewe of Fernie with the card that she and Nancy Nester of Invermere have been sending back and forth to each other since 1964. Pictured here in 2021. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)
(Back row, L-R) Grand Forks’ Travis Tysick, wife Rena Bronstein, neighbours Karren Turner, Shirley and Ross Munro and Shane Zorn gather in front of a giant Santa on Valley Heights Drive Tuesday evening, Dec. 7. In the front row (L-R) are Cameron, Shannon and Blake Zorn and the Zorns’ dog, Marty. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Giant Santas come to Grand Forks neighbourhood

The Santas are massive and somewhat costly, but neighbours say they’re worth it

(Back row, L-R) Grand Forks’ Travis Tysick, wife Rena Bronstein, neighbours Karren Turner, Shirley and Ross Munro and Shane Zorn gather in front of a giant Santa on Valley Heights Drive Tuesday evening, Dec. 7. In the front row (L-R) are Cameron, Shannon and Blake Zorn and the Zorns’ dog, Marty. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
The Malahat SkyWalk will host numerous events over the Christmas season. (John McKinley/Black Press)

Malahat Skywalk gearing up for Christmas

Number of events planned over festive season

  • Dec 7, 2021
The Malahat SkyWalk will host numerous events over the Christmas season. (John McKinley/Black Press)
SOS is hoping to make up ground on donations in the coming weeks to help provide grocery store gift cards to families and individuals this Christmas. (Submitted photo)

SOS Christmas program behind on financial donations for 2021

Program has been operating for 53 years in the Parksville Qualicum Beach region

SOS is hoping to make up ground on donations in the coming weeks to help provide grocery store gift cards to families and individuals this Christmas. (Submitted photo)
Milner Gardens and Woodland entrance sign. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Milner Gardens and Woodland entrance sign. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Susanna Newton, SOS executive director, holds up the cheque given to SOS for the breakfasts sold during the 2021 Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive. Paul Drummond, Tigh-Na-Mara general manager, and Joanne Thompson, director of sales and marketing at Tigh-Na-Mara, stand behind her in the SOS Toy Shop at the SOS Community Services Centre in Parksville. This year the Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive collected 1,397 toys, (plus 30 bikes, 25 of them from Tigh-Na-Mara staff), $11,005 in cash and cheques, $3,165 in gift cards and Tigh-Na-Mara donated $2,380 from breakfasts sold, for a grand total of $16,550 to the SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program. See story, Page A37. (Peter McCully photo)

Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive collects 1,397 toys, $16,550 in cash and gift cards

30 bikes also donated to aid SOS Christmas program

Susanna Newton, SOS executive director, holds up the cheque given to SOS for the breakfasts sold during the 2021 Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive. Paul Drummond, Tigh-Na-Mara general manager, and Joanne Thompson, director of sales and marketing at Tigh-Na-Mara, stand behind her in the SOS Toy Shop at the SOS Community Services Centre in Parksville. This year the Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive collected 1,397 toys, (plus 30 bikes, 25 of them from Tigh-Na-Mara staff), $11,005 in cash and cheques, $3,165 in gift cards and Tigh-Na-Mara donated $2,380 from breakfasts sold, for a grand total of $16,550 to the SOS Caring for Community at Christmas program. See story, Page A37. (Peter McCully photo)
Author and book

Nanaimo author pens an instant-Christmas classic with a modern twist!

Christmas is a time of tradition. Most children look forward to enjoying…

  • Nov 29, 2021
Author and book
SOS helps create lasting memories for families and individuals at Christmas. One PQB resident says it's a priceless gift. (Photo submitted)
SOS helps create lasting memories for families and individuals at Christmas. One PQB resident says it's a priceless gift. (Photo submitted)
Santa with youngsters in Qualicum’s town square. (Mandy Moraes photo)

Annual ‘Moonlight Madness’ event brings holiday cheer to Qualicum Beach

Festive lights and carols delighted families and friends

Santa with youngsters in Qualicum’s town square. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Visitors take photos in Toronto’s Distillery District, on Saturday, December 19, 2020. Almost half of Canadians plan to abandon social distancing during holiday gatherings and hug, kiss and shake hands with friends and family, a poll shows. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

45 per cent prepared to ditch social distancing at holiday gatherings: poll

Only 35 per cent said they would invite someone who is not fully vaccinated into their home

Visitors take photos in Toronto’s Distillery District, on Saturday, December 19, 2020. Almost half of Canadians plan to abandon social distancing during holiday gatherings and hug, kiss and shake hands with friends and family, a poll shows. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young