This year the annual CP Rail Holiday Train will be rolling virtually through the Tri-Cities.
The brightly lit CP Holiday Train, which annually brings about $20,000 to Tri-City food banks run by Share Family and Community Services, has been cancelled.
It's being replaced this year by a virtual concert.
That means no gathering around a colourful train to listen to music, sip cocoa and sing holiday tunes.
FACEBOOK LIVE CONCERT
Instead, Serena Ryder and The Trews will headline CP's 2020 "Holiday Train at Home" concert, which will stream on CP's Facebook page on Dec. 12. The event will raise money and awareness and help local food banks collect much-needed donations.
The Dec. 12 concert, scheduled for 5 p.m. Pacific Time, will also feature performances by JoJo Mason, Logan Staats and Kelly Prescott.
CP Holiday Train fans will be able to view the concert by visiting facebook.com/canadian.pacific at the show's start time. An archived version of the show will remain on the page for later viewing.
Large crowds typically congregate at stops in Port Moody and Port Coquitlam to see the colourfully-lit train and enjoy free entertainment, but this year the tracks will be empty as CP is following COVID-19 safety protocols and avoiding crowds.
However, despite the loss of the popular annual event, Share will still get cash, according to the company.
CASH TO BE DONATED
In an announcement online, CP stated that it would still be donating $1.24 million this year to 201 food banks in communities that ordinarily host CP Holiday Train events.
"For more than two decades, the CP family has supported Canadians and Americans in need through the CP Holiday Train program," said CP president and CEO Keith Creel. "In a year full of challenge and loss, we will host this concert as a call to action for the train's supporters to donate generously if they can this Christmas season. The spirit of the Holiday Train will come alive even though the train itself will not operate due to the COVID-19 pandemic."
Share Family Community Services is also accepting food and toys, including cash donations online, for its holiday program. More information about how to give is available at www.sharesociety.ca