If you’ve driven along Pinetree Way in the past two weeks, you may have seen some coloured lights twinkling from the trees at Town Centre Park in Coquitlam.
The city and its contractor, Star Illuminations of Port Coquitlam, have been decorating the southern half of the park with nearly 100,000 bulbs for Lights at Lafarge, an annual free show that attracts thousands of visitors from across Metro Vancouver.
And on Saturday (Nov. 26), the municipality will officially kick off the family-friendly gathering with entertainment, activities and food trucks from 5 to 8 p.m.
Wendy Wiederick, Coquitlam’s parks operations manager, said more lights and elements are added to this year’s spectacle, including a field of icicles on the festival lawn, a heart fabricated by Centennial Secondary shop students, an ice area with igloos and animals, a new double archway and a lit path from the Inspiration Garden.
But many of the much-loved features will also be back such as the lighted tunnel, the hobbit house and the castle (the latter in a different place from 2021).
To get visitors involved, the city’s Park Spark team of volunteers will be at the plaza and around the park to encourage walkers to take part in activities, happening from Tuesday to Saturday in the evenings. Carollers will also spread the holiday cheer.
Wiederick said the Light Brigade crew, which hand-built and installed many of the show elements, is hoping to reach 1,000 volunteers this year. “There’s been no shortage of people wanting to be involved in Lights at Lafarge,” she said, noting residents can still sign up by emailing email@example.com for dates and times.
Mackin Park will also be lit up
Meanwhile, Mackin Park in Maillardville will also be decked out for the holidays with more lights and floral elements around the trees and ornamental garden.
Like last year, city officials are considering leaving the Mackin lights up for Festival du Bois, the annual French-Canadian fete that runs April 1 to 3, 2023.
Lights at Lafarge may also run longer than usual, depending on the weather, she said, to extend the show until mid February for walkers to beat the winter blues.
Last year, due to park construction and COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the light display and public activities at Town Centre Park were curbed. Still, despite the setbacks and cold weather, the turn-out was “much higher than anticipated,” she said.
• Presented by Coquitlam Centre, Lights at Lafarge is on each night from dusk to around 11 p.m. from Nov. 26, and later for New Year’s Eve. Visit coquitlam.ca/lights or coquitlam.ca/parkspark for more details. To get to Town Centre Park, take the Evergreen Extension to the Lafarge Lake–Douglas station on the Millennium Line.
Send us your light displays
The Tri-City News will again run a list of Christmas lights displays around the region.
Already, there are plenty of light shows up at homes including at Fran Topp’s, whose holiday scene at 10 Hett Dr., Port Moody, will go for Dec. 1 to Jan. 1; the lights are coordinated with music, which plays through outdoor speakers.
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