There are new changes coming to the St. Catharines Santa Claus parade this year. In partnership with the Meridian Centre and Hotel Dieu Shaver, they will light up the holiday season with skating, a parade and the tree lighting ceremony this Sunday.
The holiday season kicks off in St. Catharines with fun family events that run from 2:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 17, 2019.
To start the festivities the community is invited to a free family skate at the Meridian Centre from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Children under 14 are required to wear a helmet.
The parade will follow the skate at its new time of 4:45 p.m. rain, snow or shine. The City of St. Catharines changed the time to accommodate the festive lights.
“The parade has traditionally been an afternoon parade around 1:00 p.m. and the biggest change is the switch to an evening parade where we get the opportunity to light up the downtown core and bring a different magic to the event,” said Brianne Wilson, community and events supervisor for the City of St. Catharines.
The route has changed as well. Where the parade used to end on St. Paul Street it now ends at Market Square and City Hall. According to Wilson, the routes are changed to accommodate their new partnership with the Hotel Dieu Shaver Foundation.
“Hotel Dieu will do the official flip of the holiday switch and we will light up St. Catharines all at the same time. We have changed the format of the parade to an evening parade to have all of those wonderful holiday lights as part of the parade and end to end at Market Square for a bit of an event as well,” said Wilson.
The new route starts on McGuire, turns left onto Carlisle St., left again onto St. Paul St., right onto James St., left on Church St. and then ends at the Market Square and City Hall.
Following the parade, the tree lighting ceremony will kick off Hotel Dieu Shaver’s own Snowflakes and Angels Christmas campaign. The approximate start time is 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Other activities will include vendor trucks, face painting and visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus.
The City of St. Catharines is prepared to illuminate the holiday season this weekend.
“The idea is to come and make an afternoon of it. Come down and skate, stay for the parade and hang out for the tree lighting ceremony afterwards,” said Wilson.
For more information on parade route, maps and details of the specific events got to www.stcatharines.ca/en/experiencein/st-catharines-santa-claus-parade.asp. For information on Hotel Dieu Shaver’s tree lighting ceremony go to www.hoteldieushaver.org.