Optimist Club preparing for annual Christmas in the Park

November 23, 2023   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

It has become an annual tradition for many residents in the community, and the Orangeville Optimist Club will once again be turning Kay Cee Gardens into a festive Christmas wonderland of lights during its Christmas in the Park event.

From Dec. 1 to Dec. 31, Kay Cee Gardens on Bythia Street, across from the Senior’s Centre, will be illuminated with millions of lights draped over trees, structures, and displays in the park. This month-long event typically draws more than 24,000 visitors over the course of the display.

Visiting the park and seeing the lights is always free, but cash donations are welcome. The park will be lit up and open from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. every night in December.

The event is made possible by volunteers and funding from sponsors.

Christmas in the Park is the Optimist Club’s only fundraiser. The Club supports many local worthy causes, including Big Brothers Big Sisters, Westminster Milk program DCAFF, Scouts and Guides, Orangeville minor sports, ODSS and Westside bursaries, bike roadeo, junior golf, One Voice One Team, Canadian Children’s Optimist Foundation, Youth Empowerment Day, Oratorical and Essay contests, and Central Ontario Leadership Seminars. They also make donations to Family Transition Place, Headwaters Hospital and the Orangeville Food Bank.

Christmas in the Park started over 30 years ago and began with a number of seniors stringing a few lights on a few trees at the park across from the Senior’s Centre. It has since grown to include fantastic illuminated characters, millions of dazzling lights, music, entertainment, hot drinks served by local scouts and churches, and many community displays.

Opening night features performances, carollers, hot chocolate, and a night of lights.

This year’s entertainment includes the Campfire Poets, Traveling Wannabes, Show Chorus, and The Gospel Singers.

Father Frost is coming for two evenings – Friday, Dec. 1, and Saturday, Dec. 23.

Opening night for Christmas in the Park will take place on Friday, Dec. 1, with the gates open at 6:30 p.m.

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