The Radium Events Committee (REC), in conjunction with Canadian Pacific (CP) Railway is bringing the CP Holiday Train back to Radium for another year.
Arriving at the railway crossing at Forsters Landing Road on Tuesday, December 13 at 6 p.m., the CP Holiday Train will be bringing a number of well known musical acts to perform in Radium in support of the Columbia Valley Food Bank.
Since the last week of November, two similar trains have been travelling to communities across the US and Canada in support of the fight against hunger. The Canadian train will feature Canadian music legend Valdy, along with young Ottawa rockers Brothers Dube and Canadian Country Hall of Famer Tracey Brown.
“The magic of the holiday train is phenomenal,” said producer Randall Prescott. “To be able to bring this level of talent to thousands of people on this musical roadshow for food bank programs is very special and something I am proud to be a part of.”
In Radium, the event will kick off at 5 p.m. with a special performance from the Valley Voices and the choir from Edgewater Elementary.
Admission is free, but those attending are urged to bring a non-perishable food item or a monetary donation to help support the cause.
There will be bonfires and various food and drinks made available, and the train itself will feature 14 rail cars decorated with hundreds of thousands of LED festival lights and other decorations. One of the cars will also serve as a travelling stage for performers.
“It’s really a community event,” said REC member Leann Laisnez. “There will lots of things for kids—we wanted to make it a family event, and we hope lots of people come down.”
The Columbia Valley Food Bank (CVFB) is a volunteer organization that serves the area from Canal Flats all the way to Spillimacheen.
CVFB chairman Doug Leibel estimates that the food bank gives out around 870 food hampers a year to around 1,300 adults and 600 kids.
The food bank also supports local breakfast club programs at five area schools for kids who come to school hungry, and provides food for the new Women’s Information and Safe Home program in Invermere.
Leibel says that while the food bank is “keeping their head above water,” thanks to the generosity of the surrounding communities, events like these are the ones that really bring in the donations.
“Local people have always been so supportive of the food bank,” Leibel said. “Its going to a be a fun event and there’s some good entertainment this year—we’re very lucky in this community.”
As for the musical acts, folk music performer Valdy has been performing for 40 years in dozens of different countries.
According to his biography, Valdy is, “a master of weaving stories and tales of life, love and battles won and lost—Valdy is a gifted wordsmith with an intuitive ability to reveal the finest and most intricate nuances of everyday life.”
Tracey Brown was a member of Canada’s most awarded country group, Family Brown, before forming the Juno-winning trio Prescott-Brown with her husband and brother.
Brown, a member of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame, has released over 20 albums, and along with husband Randall Prescott has been involved with the CP Holiday Train since 2004.
Finally, youth rockers Brothers Dube will also be taking the stage, having raised over $100,000 during their brief career for causes such as Haiti Relief, breast cancer research and a variety of children’s organizations.
These three brothers began their career by posting covers of some of their mother’s favourite songs on YouTube while she battled cancer, and shortly after her passing began fundraising for a large number of causes.
If you can’t make it to the Holiday Train, donations for the CVFB can also be dropped off at The Valley Echo office during regular business hours.