In honour of Canada 150, the theme for this year's Tillsonburg BIA Christmas Crawl is 'A Canadian Christmas.'
Fantastic, festive fun, said BIA's Virginia Armstrong, describing the 5-9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1st Christmas Crawl.
"Free samples and instant prizes," said Armstrong. "Sometimes some of the businesses will donate gift cards or 'swag.' We'll also have people on the street who will say, 'hello, you've just won...'"
"We're giving out gift basket raffles," said Carolyn Closs, owner of The Anchor Shoppe, which moved to 87 Broadway last month. "A paint gift basket, a chocolate and beverage gift basket, and also a shimmer gift basket. We're going to have hot cider and... some sales, too."
It's important to register for a Christmas Crawl 'passport', which can be picked up at the Christmas Crawl office (just south of TD Canada Trust at The Town Centre) between 4-7 p.m.
"It takes a couple hours to do the whole thing," said Armstrong.
The highlight of the event is a Scavenger Hunt, which will have 'Canadian clues.'
"They can be found in the windows or the storefronts or inside the participating businesses. So they're going to have a clue, and they'll find which province or territory and then write it in."
When completed, Scavenger Hunt passports will be returned to the Christmas Crawl office before 9:30 p.m. that same night to be eligible for the grand prize draw.
"You can get additional ballots if you visit mandatory locations," Armstrong noted. "They will be listed on the Scavenger Hunt passport."
Children - young and old alike - will be able to visit Santa Claus and his live reindeer at the fountain parkette near Hurley's from 5-8 p.m. where there will also be children's activities, including crafts, and a chance to sign Tillsonburg's huge Canada 150 flag. You can also visit The Town Centre to have your photo taken with Tilly, 6-8 p.m., by Helsdon Photography (for a fee).
Festive music will be played on the streets throughout the evening, and the Tillsonburg Historical Society's Pioneer Performing Troupe will be joining the festivities.
"Businesses are already decorating their stores up," said Armstrong. "They're excited to greet guests and regular customers during the Christmas season. It's a fun night for everyone."
It's not just for retail stores, participating restaurants will be offering special food items during the Christmas Crawl.
If you make a Food Bank donation at either Hurley's or Morgan Real Estate, you will receive a Bonus Entry into the draw for prizes - so help support the Helping Hand Food Bank and increase your chance to win prizes!