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Why this soda giant is bringing Santa to Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam grocery stores

The Coca Cola holiday caravan is coming to two locations in the Tri-Cities.
The Coca Cola Caravan is on its way to Coquitlam.

A holiday caravan linked with the Santa Claus tradition is making its way to Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam.

Coca-Cola, which has advertised its soda pop with Santa for the last 100 years, is bringing its Caravan Tour to Safeway at Shaughnessy Station in Port Coquitlam this Thursday (Dec. 1) and to the Save-on-Foods at Sunwood Square on Dec. 16.

The visits to the Tri-Cities will be among dozens of Canadian stops, as the tour seeks to "spread holiday joy to communities over shared experiences and moments of magic," according to a news release.

Fans who turn out for the event will enjoy an "interactive and festive holiday experience."

A visit from Santa is also expected to be part of the festivities.

What does Coca-Cola have to do with the holidays?

The Coca-Cola Company began its holiday advertising in the 1920s with shopping-related ads in magazines like The Saturday Evening Post.

The first Santa ads used a strict-looking Claus, but in 1930, artist Fred Mizen painted a department-store Santa in a crowd drinking a bottle of Coke.

According to Coca-Cola lore, the company began placing ads in popular magazines beginning in the 1930s, by illustrator Haddon Sundblom.

For inspiration, Sundblom turned to Clement Clark Moore's 1822 poem "A Visit From St. Nicholas" (commonly called "'Twas the Night Before Christmas").

"Moore's description of St. Nick led to an image of a warm, friendly, pleasantly plump and human Santa. (And even though it's often said that Santa wears a red coat because red is the colour of Coca-Cola, Santa appeared in a red coat before Sundblom painted him.)," according to the website.

Here's when the Coca-Cola truck will be in the Tri-Cities:

Safeway Shaughnessy

  • Dec. 1
    • 3 to 6 p.m.
    • 2850 Shaughnessy St.


  • Dec. 16
    • 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    • 3025 Lougheed Hwy.


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