Fernie ‘Holiday Kickoff’ events bring cheer

Noah Houde sits on the shoulders of Mikael Houde (left) next to Manu Houde sitting on the shoulders of Mira Achard (right). The family was enjoying the firework display at the Light Up The Night event in Fernie on Nov. 26, 2021.Noah Houde sits on the shoulders of Mikael Houde (left) next to Manu Houde sitting on the shoulders of Mira Achard (right). The family was enjoying the firework display at the Light Up The Night event in Fernie on Nov. 26, 2021.
From left: Renata Dirks, Axel Dirks, Nicole Roa, and Sophia Dirks. The four were attendees at the 2021 Light Up The Night event in Fernie on Nov. 26. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)From left: Renata Dirks, Axel Dirks, Nicole Roa, and Sophia Dirks. The four were attendees at the 2021 Light Up The Night event in Fernie on Nov. 26. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Kerri and Avery McCrady (left and right) attended the 2021 Light Up The Night event at Fernie’s Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Kerri and Avery McCrady (left and right) attended the 2021 Light Up The Night event at Fernie’s Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
The Audielles singing Christmas carols at the 2021 Light Up The Night event in Fernie. From left: Alex Simons, Lindsay Vallance, Sadie Rosgen, Leighann Whittington, Liza Gareau Tosh, Karen Luzny, Katie Lane.The Audielles singing Christmas carols at the 2021 Light Up The Night event in Fernie. From left: Alex Simons, Lindsay Vallance, Sadie Rosgen, Leighann Whittington, Liza Gareau Tosh, Karen Luzny, Katie Lane.
Sadie Rosgen of The Audielles sings alongside her carolling troupe on the decorated deck of the Fernie Arts Station at the City of Fernie’s Light Up The Night event, Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Sadie Rosgen of The Audielles sings alongside her carolling troupe on the decorated deck of the Fernie Arts Station at the City of Fernie’s Light Up The Night event, Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Hundreds of people were gathered at Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021 for the City of Fernie’s Light Up The Night event. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Hundreds of people were gathered at Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021 for the City of Fernie’s Light Up The Night event. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
Brad Parsell, executive director of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce, says a few words at the 2021 Light Up The Night event at Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021. The evening festivities, put on by the City of Fernie, were held in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce’s annual holiday shopping event. The first official combined initiative was called the ‘Holiday Kickoff’. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)Brad Parsell, executive director of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce, says a few words at the 2021 Light Up The Night event at Station Square on Nov. 26, 2021. The evening festivities, put on by the City of Fernie, were held in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce’s annual holiday shopping event. The first official combined initiative was called the ‘Holiday Kickoff’. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
City of Fernie Mayor Ange Qualizza said a few brief words at the Light Up The Night event on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)City of Fernie Mayor Ange Qualizza said a few brief words at the Light Up The Night event on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
From left: Shayne Dahlseide, Lauren Bartosek, and Gina Johnson. The trio came to Fernie from Cranbrook to attend the ‘Holiday Kickoff’ festivities on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)From left: Shayne Dahlseide, Lauren Bartosek, and Gina Johnson. The trio came to Fernie from Cranbrook to attend the ‘Holiday Kickoff’ festivities on Nov. 26, 2021. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)
The deck of the Fernie Arts Station was decorated for Christmas on Nov. 26, 2021 for the first official ‘Holiday Kickoff’ event in the city. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)The deck of the Fernie Arts Station was decorated for Christmas on Nov. 26, 2021 for the first official ‘Holiday Kickoff’ event in the city. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)

Families and friends gathered with holiday cheer at Fernie’s Station Square Friday (Nov. 26) night for carols, fireworks and bright christmas lights.

The evening festivities were a combination of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce’s annual shopping event to promote local businesses in the city, and the city’s own Light Up The Night event, culminating in a day of events around Fernie.

READ MORE: Fernie to kick off holiday season with lights, fireworks and sales

Station Square was filled with hundreds of people at around 6:45 p.m., all gathered to take pictures with Mr. And Mrs. Claus, listen to Christmas carols, and turn their eyes to the sky for a bright and booming fireworks display.

“We’re stoked about the fireworks for tonight, because we haven’t seen fireworks in so long,” said Renata Dirks, who attended the event with her two children Axel and Sophia and their friend Nicole Roa.

The kids said they felt happy and excited to see Mr. and Mrs. Claus, and wanted to get candy canes from them.

Avery McCrady, 10, also felt “really excited” to see the fireworks.

“I really love Christmas because that’s when I got my dog. It reminds me of him,” she said.

Executive director of the Fernie Chamber, Brad Parsell thanked all the people who made the event possible after taking a year off in 2020 due to COVID-19.

“Big shout out to them, and big shout out to all of you for supporting local this holiday. Let’s keep our money here in Fernie and #SpendItInFernie.”

Mayor Ange Qualizza then led a countdown for an impressive fireworks display.

Mikael Houde, who was watching the sky light up with his son Noah on his shoulders, said he enjoyed the fireworks and didn’t expect the finale to be so big. It was “awesome,” he said.

Shayne Dahlseide, Lauren Bartosek, and Gina Johnson all flocked to Fernie from Cranbrook to attend the day’s festivities. It was their first time at a Light Up The Night festival in the city.

“It’s beautiful,” Dahlseide said.

“I wish everyone a happy holidays.”

READ MORE: City of Fernie flips the switch on holiday cheer


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josh.fischlin@thefreepress.ca

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