On November 26 the Holiday Train embarked on its journey from Kahnawake, Quebec, before heading to the North East U.S. and Southern Ontario, and visiting over 130 communities in eight states and six provinces along the way.
Last night the Holiday Train completed its cross-Canada journey at Queen Street Plaza in Port Moody, BC, and this year the weather cooperated as the locals enjoyed the festivities.
In Port Moody, attendees brought non-perishable food items to add to the generous corporate contributions made locally. All collected donations are given to the Tri-Cities food bank: SHARE Family & Community Services Society.
Canadian Pacific's Holiday Train is a spectacular sight, covered in almost 200,000 LED lights that blink red, green and other festive colours, as it travels through countryside in the dark of night.
At each stop along the route Canadian Pacific provides a brightly decorated box car converted into a stage, where the entertainers put on a free holiday show. This year entertainers included the Odds, an alternative rock band, who brought their energy and full voiced harmonies to the Holiday Train stage for the first time. They were joined by Shaun Verrault of the Canadian blues-rock trio Wide Mouth Mason (who I saw at last years event in the freezing sub-zero snow).
A special guest appearance was made by Santa Claus who annually reminds us all that the bright lights, festivities, entertainment and merriment are about the season and spirit of giving.
Over $2.4 million has been raised and 1.2 million pounds of food has been collected for local food banks across Canada and the United States, since the Holiday Train's inception in 1999. Thanks to the generosity of CP and all who participated.
John in Port Moody, BC