Instead, it has been moved to the Saturday before Christmas in the hopes more people will be able to attend and to give volunteers a break on Christmas Eve.
“The dinner has grown to be one of the most anticipated events in our community and requires the dedicated work and long hours of many volunteers and local businesses,” explains Rob Blain of the Christmas Dinner Society. “While we can never truly thank the dozens of volunteers and local business enough for their support, we can make it easier for everyone to spend Christmas Eve with their families.”
The dinner was started in 1992 by local emergency services staff, and is put on with the help of many donations and volunteers. Meals are also delivered to local businesses with employees working.
Santa Claus will also be in town on the 21st, starting with a visit in the long-term care ward at the Fort Nelson Hospital and a tour of the town courtesy of emergency services. He will later arrive at the Christmas Dinner via helicopter, courtesy of Highland Helicopters, and will meet with children until 5 p.m. before his big trip around the world. Those waiting to see Saint Nick can wait on the west side of the Recreation Centre and watch his helicopter land in the overflow parking lot at 1 p.m.
Dinner opens at 1 p.m. at the Recreation Centre Community Hall and closes at 7 p.m. The parade starts at 10:45 a.m. at the hospital and ends at 11:30 at the RCMP detachment. The parade route is available for download below.