Not only are Christmas lights now in Victoria Park but they are also magnificent in Rotary park. In his speech to the large crowd in front of the bandshell, Mayor John Henderson said “we listened – you said you wanted lights in Victoria Park so that’s what we did”. The details were decided by a citizen’s committee set up for the purpose last January after Bruce Moore made a presentation to Council on the subject (see links below). And once again, Cobourg showed it knows how to party and somehow, everyone in Cobourg showed up – well not really but it seemed that way – I’d guess there were close to a thousand people in Victoria Park, including lots of families. It was more than just a “turning on of the lights” ceremony.
At around 6:00 pm on Friday, November 22, people started gathering in front of Victoria Hall where they were entertained by carol singers from VOS and Northumberland Players. We waited till around 6:30 when the greetings and “thank you’s” started with MC York Bell-Smith, Town Crier Mandy Robinson, MPP David Piccini and Councillor Adam Bureau (photo – above-right). Most of the councillors were there but didn’t make speeches. At around 6:40, a countdown led to the lights being turned on at Victoria hall and Rotary Park (see photos below). This year Victoria Hall has a lot more decoration than usual with Town Maintenance staff busy putting together their “Winter Wonderland”.
Once those lights were on, everyone made their way to Victoria Park. Many went down Second Street and passed a good number of vendors selling a range of items. They will be there until 5:00 pm Saturday. In addition, anyone bringing a non-perishable food item for the Northumberland Fare Share Food Bank got a lighted candle from the Cobourg Police Service. Somewhere amongst it all, Habitat for Humanity were distributing gingerbread cookie kits to children. Also, two horse drawn carriages were providing rides.
As people arrived at the Bandshell in a dark Victoria park, they were greeted by more carol singers (Northumberland Orchestra and Choir) while waiting for everyone to arrive. At around 7:15, the Mayor gave his short speech and with a countdown, all the lights in Victoria Park were also turned on. This year, 30,000 lights were added making a total of 180,000. Santa was there for the kids and once the lights were on, festive music was played. At the north end of the park, the Salvation army band was also playing Christmas music.
And the weather cooperated – cold, but the wind was not as bad as earlier in the day.
The lights will be on from now until February 2020 from 6 pm until 10 pm – with a couple of exceptions because of Netflix filming the 10th and final episode for the season of Ginny & Georgia:
- The Christmas lights at the Bandshell in Victoria Park will be temporarily turned off on Sunday, November 24th from 5:30 p.m. until 12 a.m.
- The Christmas lights at Victoria Hall may temporarily be switched over to flood lights the evening of Monday, November 25th.
Below are some photos of the event.
- Changes Recommended for Christmas Lights – Ad Hoc Committee report – 24 August 2019 – includes rationale and details of recommendations.
- Councillors busy at their first meeting of 2019 – 11 January 2019
- Party Atmosphere for Lights On – 24 November 2018
- Cobourg Alive for Lights on (2017) – 25 November 2017