Tonight at 6pm we went to Province House for the Official lighting of the Charlottetown Christmas Tree and the beginning of the Season with a full calendar of things to do, we are 35 days away from Noël.
The tree is located on the esplanade in front of the Homburg Theatre of the Confederation Centre of the Arts. The Mayor, the Speaker of the Legislature, the Lieutenant Governor and other dignitaries were on hand, the MC was the Editor of the Guardian Newspaper. Here in Charlottetown, at such a community event everyone mingles, there is no tight security, the Lieutenant Governor moves around talks to people and so do other officials, everyone knows everybody else, a very friendly atmosphere reminiscent of a simpler time. It is not something you see often nowadays. The music was provided by the Choir of the Confederation Centre, a very good choir and they sang only traditional Christian Carols, nothing secular. The Mayor wished everyone a Merry Christmas and reminded us that we live in the best city in the World, I suppose he can say that since he is the Mayor.
The tree was lighted by Father Christmas, that is what he is called here not Santa Claus, who is dressed up as Saint Nicholas, he also had a thick Island-Irish accent, it was delightful.
Next weekend is the traditional Charlottetown Christmas parade and there will be probably about 40 floats. Shops are also doing their NO Tax shopping event, which brings out the crowds in the old centre of the city. Despite the clear skies, no snow in the forecast for some time to come and mild temperature, it really felt like the Christmas Season.
The Dutch community on PEI are also having their traditional Christmas à la Hollandaise with Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piete.
This afternoon the Christmas trees went up all along Great George street between Peake’s Quay and Province House. Each one is decorated by a group or a business and the money goes to children’s charity.
I know that new comers or Immigrants to the Island will also be touring and partake in the Festivities, to look at the Christmas trees and cookies, coffee and hot chocolate is offered.
The trees on Great George Street.
After the Festivities we went to Local 343 for a drink and stayed for dinner and met more friends and neighbours, the musician tonight was a very good fellow Barry O’Brien.