Christmas is making a big return in Papakura.
Celebrations begin on Friday 1 December with Carols in the Park, the Papakura Local Board and Harvest Christian Church supported event featuring a massed children’s choir from 5.30pm.
The Papakura Rotary Club Santa Parade comes to town at 3pm on Sunday 3 December, immediately followed by Chilling in the Park at Central Park until 5pm, with stalls and family entertainment.
Papakura Local Board chair Brent Catchpole hopes the town will be rocking.
“The weather has made things miserable, and the cost-of-living has added another level of difficulty for families, but this is a chance to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas.
“The Papakura Business Association has done a fine job of organising things and has been incredibly active in ensuring retailers enter the Christmas spirit.
“We partner with the association and encourage everyone to shop local. With the streets closed to traffic from 1pm through to 4pm for the parade, it’s an excellent chance for pedestrians to take over.”
He says Chilling in the Park has music, food trucks, face-painters and fun for everyone. “It’s a wonderful way for families to be together, just as the earlier Carols in the Park is. It even features board members Felicity Auva’a and Andrew Webster swapping agendas for musical scores.”
The association has ensured Christmas decorations are all in place and even the town’s rubbish bins have been wrapped.
Santa’s Grotto will be inside Papakura Library from 15 to 23 December (closed 17th) from 11am to 2pm. Catchpole says Santa will be in the chair and people can take their own photo, while a gift-wrapping service will operate for a gold coin donation to the Papakura Volunteer Fire Brigade.
Association head Tracy Shackleton says advertising has been booked to promote the town and its businesses. “Our website www.papakura.co.nz has everything on it and we haven’t forgotten old -fashioned mail, with a Santa mailbox for the kids to send their letters, which will all be replied to, by the library from 1 December.
“We’ve encouraged businesses to dress their windows and will have a judge popping around because there are prizes up for grabs and there’s shop and win campaign too from 1 to 21 December.
“Those who spends $20 or more can go into a draw for $1000 of vouchers to spend in town. Shoppers write their name and number on the back of a receipt and put it in the box outside the library. The winner will be drawn on 22 December – so a nice Christmas present for someone.”
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