Christmas in the park and the Santa parade take place on Saturday

Christmas in the park and the Santa parade take place on Saturday

Maple Ridge Christmas in park returns

Festivities start off with Christmas in the Park at 4 p.m., in Memorial Peace Park.

You better watch out because Santa Claus is coming to town.

The Maple Ridge Santa Claus parade and Christmas in the Park will take place on Saturday, Dec. 6.

Festivities start off with Christmas in the Park at 4 p.m., in Memorial Peace Park.

New this year will be a series of carnival games for children to participate in. Passports for the games can be picked up at the Maple Ridge Christmas Festival tent next to the bandstand. The passports are stamped at each game and once completed can be returned to be entered into a draw for a prize.

There will be free pictures with Santa Clause in his yurt, located at the south west entrance to Memorial Peace Park.

Free hot chocolate, popcorn, and cider will be available, with attendees encouraged to bring their own mugs and containers to save on garbage.

The Burnett Fellowship Baptist Church will put on a live nativity scene at the far end of the park. Members will also dish out free S’mores.

The local Kiwanis Club will cook hot dogs hand out and coffee, by donation.

All funds raised will go to the Christmas Festival Society for next year’s event.

A mailbox for letters to Santa will be located beside his yurt. Don’t worry if you haven’t already written to Santa, children can write letters at the craft tent in Christmas Corner.

The St. Patrick’s School choir will lead off the entertainment on the bandstand, where there will be live entertainment and a Christmas sing-a-long.

The Christmas Festival Society will also collect donations of new, unwrapped toys for the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Christmas Hamper Society and non-perishable food items for the Friends in Need Food Bank, which can be dropped off at the tent in the park.

The official lighting of the Christmas tree will take place at 6 p.m., beside Santa’s yurt,  which will also signal the start of the parade.

Dianne Enns, chair of the Maple Ridge Christmas Festival Society, is relieved that it is not expected to be as cold as last year, when 47 groups registered to march in the parade but only 37 showed up due to the cold temperature outside.

Enns is hoping to hit the 60 mark this year.

The assembly area for the Santa parade will be on Brown Avenue by Plaza Street.

From there, it will make its way south along Plaza Street to Dewdney Trunk Road, where it will travel east to 224th Street.

It will go south along 224th  St. to Selkirk Avenue, where it will turn west and finish at 223 Street.