By Mayor Frank Campion
December is one of the most exciting and awaited months of the year. As Canadians, we learn to embrace December because it delivers winter and all the amazing benefits that a Canadian winter has to offer. December gives us the opportunity to get back on the ice, take the family tobogganing, and teach the kids how to make maple snow taffy. December also closes the year for those who follow the 12 month civil calendar. It’s a time to reflect on the past year and recognize the moments, accomplishments, and hurdles we’ve had.
December invites a variety of holiday celebrations that bring families closer together. December’s celebrations are the inspiration behind the massive Christmas tree outside of Civic Square and the city’s Santa Claus Parade that kicks off the holiday season every November. Christmas is a celebration that unites families through celebration, food, and tradition. Some of this excitement can be found on Saturday, December 16, while shoppers celebrate Christmas at the Market at the Welland Farmers’ Market. Bring the family and find traditional Christmas trimmings while connecting with the community and the people who grow your food.
Although Christmas decorations, parties, and music tend to be highlighted in December; other holiday traditions are celebrated throughout the city. Welland has always been a city vibrant with multiculturalism, tradition, and customs.
Residents celebrate Hanukkah in December. Families celebrate Hanukkah with eight nights of festivities, including the lighting of the menorah candelabrum each night, and enjoying a variety of traditional foods.
Kwanzaa is a celebration of traditions and family. Kwanzaa celebrations typically showcase visual arts, music, and culture. Food is also a symbol of statement and tradition during Kwanzaa and brings an array of African favourites to the table.
These are just a few traditional family celebrations that take place among Welland families. Join your neighbours this December and discover how diversity in culture and tradition bring families and holidays together. Although we all have our own unique ways to commemorate our traditions, shared values such as joy, hope, peace, and giving, tie us all together.
Enjoy the festivities with friends, family, and neighbours. On behalf of Welland city council and city staff, have a safe and wonderful holiday season.
(Source: City of Welland website)