Father Christmas is on the lookout for some extra pocket money over the festive season after the Clare Lions Christmas Committee last week regretfully announced the unanimous decision to cancel this year’s Clare Christmas Pageant and after-party scheduled for December 4.
Clare Lion Ron Wurst understands everyone will be disappointed and said the committee was very sad to make the decision.
“The health and safety of our community is of highest priority this year,” Ron said.
“With COVID-19 social distancing and hygiene restrictions regarding public events and gatherings, we believed it a safest option to cancel the pageant.”
“We just don’t have enough manpower to police the restrictions, with all the excited kids around running into each other and touching the sideshows without satinitising them in between.”
“I realise it is an early call to make, but by cancelling now it takes the stress and worry from the volunteers not having to think about all the contingency plans we may need and any ramifications if there is an outbreak in our area.
“It also allows our sideshow attractions and stall holders to be able to look for other events to attend on the same date.”
The Plains Producer is yet to hear of any other local pageant cancellations and will relay this information in due course.
The Christmas committee will still decorate the main street at the end of November, play Christmas carols throughout December and run the colouring in competition for the kids, but the Giant Stocking raffle will not be offered this year.
“We thank our many generous sponsors, local businesses, workers, clubs and everyone involved in our community event for their support over the years, and we will be back in 2021.”
The committee encourages the community to shop locally this Christmas to create the same excitement in the air as the pageant.
Clare Valley Toyota, sponsor of Father Christmas’ float in the pageant since ‘anyone can remember’, has allowed the great man himself to detail some cars to earn some extra time in their workshop to fine tune his sleigh for the big ride on Christmas Eve.
“You should see how well our staff have behaved while he’s been here,” Clare Valley Toyota’s Jacob Kain said.
Clare Lions Club also mentioned it has confirmed Father Christmas is an ‘essential worker’ and has already been granted a one off ‘Unconditional Border Pass’ for December 24-25.