The Christmas spirit swung into full force in Wetaskiwin at 5:30 p.m. on December 10th, 2012. As darkness descended on the City, a steady stream of vehicles converged on 4009 – 50 Street in anticipation of the arrival of the brightly decorated Canadian Pacific Holiday Train 2012. Seniors, families, small children and babies were treated to the dazzling light display, free hot dogs, hot chocolate and cookies courtesy of ATB Financial and the Wetaskiwin Credit Union and entertainment.
Soon a stage opened up in the side of one of the box cars where Miss Emily and Doc Walker entertained the crowd and Mayor Bill Elliott brought greetings and thanked everyone for contributing to the festive season.
The event was a ‘season to be jolly’ as C.P. Railway donated $1000 to the Salvation Army Food Bank and generous residents of Wetaskiwin and region did their part and filled a truck with food and a Salvation Army kettle with cash in support of the local food bank.
Holiday Train raises awareness about hunger
In December, 1999 CP began running a freight train decorated with thousands of Christmas lights across Canada, to raise awareness of the issue of hunger prevalent in all communities. The goal of the Holiday Train is to collect food and money for local food banks and to raise awareness in the fight against hunger. At each of approximately 150 communities CP makes a corporate donation and encourages local residents to donate food and funds, all of which stays in the community.
Since its inception in 1999, the Holiday Train has raised more than $6.4 million and over 2.6 million pounds of food in the U.S. and Canada. The Canadian Holiday Train embarked on its three-week journey on November 28 from Beaconsfield, Quebec, and will conclude in Port Moody, BC, on December 18.
Food recommended for the Food Bank
Food Banks Canada recommends the following products when making a donation to the Food Bank: pasta products & rice, canned meats and fish, dry and canned soups & stews, canned fruit & vegetables, breakfast cereal, peanut butter, canned/powdered milk, fruit juices, pasta sauce, beans & legumes and baby food.
Millet Christmas Train
Country music stars Doc Walker got everyone into the Christmas Spirit at the CP Holiday Train concerts as evidenced by the generosity of the communities where they played. The Leduc food bank was presented with a cheque from CP Rail for $2000.00 but at press time they were still counting the donations they had received from residents. Residents of Wetaskiwin raised an impressive $1000.00 in cash and over 1,800 lbs of food for their food bank. But it was the little Town of Millet who really rose to the challenge for their food bank, and raised $5,261.75 in cash and filled their Lion's Club bus with food!
Photo by Lorna Lowe
Follow the remainder of the Holiday Train trip at cpr.ca on Facebook.com/CPHolidayTrain twitter.com/CanadianPacific #CPHolidayTrain