Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time

The Holdin' Ground Room
Our Christmas “Holdin’ Ground”

I have been thinking for a long time on what I would write about for my New Years Eve Blog. I returned to work today, and was asked a simple question, “How was your Christmas?” I am sure the question was meant with good intentions by all, but it goes to show that many view Christmas as a one or two day affair. It could be that times are changing, or it could be because once the big fellow leaves it is all over for another year, “Yes bye we made it through another year”. I believe it is part and parcel of many things, including the aforementioned but that we are all exhausted by the time the holiday is upon us. It is difficult to embrace a holiday for a month, to keep that spirit alive and prepare mentally, physically and in some cases financially, it takes a huge effort. It is easy to lose focus of the meaning of the season when it is clouded in commercialism and deadlines to get that perfect gift. I try each year to not let that get to me, but some portions do, as a result I can get a little frazzled. I try not to let it ruin the celebration, and to date it never do, I am blessed with a wonderful family and a great group of friends to celebrate this magical season. So when asked how was my Christmas, I usually say…”It is going great”…or in the title of this blog…”I’m Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time”

Thankful this year!!

I have so many things to be thankful for this Christmas, all are personal in nature, but worthy of blogging about. As you all know I love Christmas Eve, it is a time for family, friends and connecting with the past. I have been fortunate to have done all this so far this Christmas. I visit my grandparent’s grave site every Christmas Eve, the tradition started with my brothers, but now I go it alone. For the past 10 years that I have been blessed with children, they have waited patiently in the car with Lisa as I visited and toasted nan and pop, well this year they asked me if they could go with me, I was uncertain at first as I did not know what their reaction would be. I am so happy I consented, it was obvious it was a learning experience for them, there were many questions but they seemed to understand why I have been visiting for over 16 years. It is hard to describe the feeling I had, knowing they too embraced the visitation of my grandparents; it gave me the opportunity to tell them about their great grand parents and their traditions.

Christmas Eve @ the Noel’s

The visitation happens just before going to Lisa’s Mom and Dad’s for Christmas Eve. Speaking of traditions, I have been going to the Noels for 22 years now, the crowd never gets smaller, only larger, now a great deal of the grand children are grown and we are now blessed with great grand kids at the celebration. It is a special day, filled with family and friends, and yes, plenty of food!! This was the first year that we did not BBQ, we had a potluck, and it was tasty. My In-Laws are blessed, and they know it, all their children and most of the grandchildren live in Newfoundland and attend their Christmas Eve gathering, they are truly blessed.

Midnight Mass with Mom and Dad

 Time permitted us to do something I have not had the opportunity to do since our children were born; we surprised mom and dad and went to midnight mass with them. It has been at least 17 years since I have been to St. Joseph’s for Christmas Eve. I use to sing in the choir and sometimes sang a solo, it seems so long ago, it was wonderful to go back with my family and have mom and dad with us. The comment that left me with the largest impact came the next day when dad (unexpectedly) said how nice it was to have three generations in the one pew for Christmas. His eyes filled with tears, I knew whatn he meant, but really did not know it meant that much to him. I will never forget it and am so happy we went to the “River” for Christmas.

Hockey @ Christmas

My son Kaegan has found a passion for hockey so we decided to enter him in a Christmas hockey camp. He really enjoys playing hockey with the Rovers minor hockey system, but this was an opportunity for him to further develop his skills. This was his first camp, but I think it will not be his last. He really enjoys his novice coaches and their teaching methods but the opportunity to work on specific skills was just the boost he needed. The camp also allowed me some father and son time . As well, it gave him some time away from the computer and Wii , I think as long as BO and Scott run these camps, we will be there.

Where are you Christmas?

Ok, my last shot at the media. We all know that Christmas on the radio is commercial based, but do they really have to tone back Christmas so early? You can still listen to my one hour Christmas radio show from anywhere in the world. Feel my spirit of Christmas. Please have a listen http://www.bayroberts.com/Christmas%20Radio/christmasradio.html

On behalf of My Wife Lisa, my children Maggie and Kaegan, I want to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Ron

Tibb’s Eve and Christmas Eve

Do you like stories?
Reading Christmas Stories at the Visitor Information Centre

Tibb’s Eve – Christmas Eve Eve

We all look forward to various holidays in the year: Easter, St. Patrick’s Day, Valentine’s Da, and of course Christmas.  All of these are wonderful observances, but for me, and for many other people in Newfoundland and Labrador, Tibb’s Eve is an extra celebration. We do not get time off for this celebration, but we do find time to observe this unique day.  Tibb’s Eve is a time for preparation,  taking an account of what we have throughout the year, and for getting ready for Christmas.  A holiday is made by the special memories it creates.  It is a succession of attitudes and traditions of our ancestors.  The memories I have of a young boy tasting mom and nan’s cake and cookies, the smell of oil paint as it drifts through their house in preparation, me and my brother Ken taking pop to the liquor store for his Christmas “grog”.  All this plus much much more … makes Tibb’s Eve what it is.

One of the most special memories I have of Tibb’s is  being included… for the first time,  having the opportunity to go with my older brother and taking pop for his Christmas errands, and eventually making our way to the house and tasting the drink of the season in little “legion glasses”.  This memory I will always hold dear to my heart.

I have enjoyed writing these blogs about Tibbs, and sharing the stories of the past.  Now I make new memories as I still have the opportunity to go with my brother and take care of our last minute shopping.  I make sure to drop by the NLC and select all I need to prep for the holidays, just in time to drop them off at the house and go to the Search and Rescue for a BBQ.  In the picture below are two great friends.  Perry Bowering has been in my Tibb’s blogs for about 4 years. We usually are putting up lights now, but with the wind and rain, well most of mine are on the ground. Clyde, a gentleman from Shearstown, Bay Roberts, is one of the life bloods of the Wolverines Search and Rescue.

Perry and Clyde have put thousands of hours into ensuring we are safe during this festive time, I thank them for that.

 

Tibb's Eve - Christmas Eve Eve

 

Since writing blogs about Tibb’s I have received some media coverage, from newspapers and radio especially. Well today CBC Radio wanted to do a small segment of the observance; it did not work out as I had a hectic schedule and they have a tight timeline. I would love the opportunity to discuss this day with them. It is an important part of who we are, I hope they call back.

Christmas Eve

The Fireplace for Santa.
Fireplace for Santa – Visitor Information Centre – Photo: Dennis Flynn

By the time you read this it will be Christmas Eve.   Everyone will be so excited and looking forward to the coming of the Christ Child. I have a ritual of cooking for the town council of Bay Roberts, inside and outside staff.  It is a nice time to connect with all I work with throughout the year.  We lost a special friend and it weighs heavy in all hearts.  Our thoughts are with Richards’s family.  I also visit my grandfather’s grave Christmas Eve, it may sound depressing, but I honestly find peace in spending time with someone who has made such an impact on my life.  My nan and pop and any family who are buried there will always have a visit from me during Christmas.

Christmas Eve has been a special time since I was a child of course, with the anticipation of the jolly fellow and the excitement of midnight mass, this kept Christmas special.  Today, I get excited for my children and for the opportunity of spending time with love ones. I always like to sit back , relax and remember the year at hand, we never know when will be the last time we will have the gift of spending Christmas with friends and family. So while we can, we should give thanks, I know I do.

Christmas Radio Station 88.5 FM

  

Dec 24th - 27th - One Hour Christmas Show

Dec 24th - 27th - One Hour Christmas Show

OK for my last comments, our Christmas radio station 88.5fm is up and running for information purposes BUT tomorrow, and up to December 27th, we will be hosting a 1 hour radio show of various Christmas music and spoken word pieces. I hope you will like it, as I think it is needed to help celebrate this amazing season.

Christmas Pavilion at the Bay Roberts Visitor Information Centre

Please visit our Christmas Pavilion on Veterans Memorial Highway. The atmosphere and the decorations are amazing.  On December 30th,  from 7:00-10:00pm join our All Ages Kitchen Party at the Pavilion.  Come to the Pavilion for an evening of music, dance and refreshments. Wear your mummers costume for a chance to win a prize!!!  This is a family event.

….and click www.bayroberts.com for all information that is Bay Roberts.

Admiring the Pigeon Inlet Quilt
Christmas Pavilion at Visitor Information Centre Photo: Dennis Flynn

Have a Merry and Blessed Christmas.

Ron Delaney

Snowperson Community!!
At the Christmas Pavilion Photo: N. Ayad

Bay Roberts Lights Up!!!

I usually do not write a blog about my day job, but I think this year it would be nice to share what some do not know about our wonderful little town. Our community has embraced the Christmas season in a huge way, we have the Largest Christmas Festival in the province highlighting many events that were already existing but not promoted collectively. The concept of the “Festival of Lights” is simple, celebrate and promote all things Christmas. We ensure that we present a five week event that ensures every facet of the season is available for residents and visitors to our community. Please take a moment to read , watch and listen as to why we are one of the most progressive Christmas Communities in Canada. (We have the national Awards to back up my statement*s*).

In an effort to show you a taste of all things Christmas in Bay Roberts I will be give some descriptions as to ongoing events but will let the links do their work. Within the links it will be evident a great deal of time was taken to design the events, take the pictures and videos and present to the public, I would like to thank the hundreds of volunteers who help make it all possible, especially Margaret Ayad of Baccalieu Consulting for her dedication to our community.

Bay Roberts Santa Clause Parade:

Since moving to Bay Roberts 16 years ago I have always marveled at the Christmas parade, the volunteers involved, the work gone into the floats, the rehearsals for the dancers and cadets and the extreme dedication of the Bay Roberts Lions Club. It is a top notch parade that brings over ten thousand people to our community the first Saturday in December. For a sample follow the link to the 2009 Bay Roberts Lions Club Santa Clause Parade. The Parade starts 10 am this Saturday morning; I hope to see you there!!

 

Bay Roberts Guides - Mummers!!
Bay Roberts Guides – Mummers!!
2009 Santa Claus Parade

Opening Ceremonies and Night Time Parade:
December 6th will be a huge night in Bay Roberts and Surrounding area. What was once modest but quaint tree lighting has blossomed into one of the Largest Christmas light – ups in the province. The evening consists of a Illumination parade, sing-a-long, tree lighting, illumination Park light-up and family fireworks, all washed down with some wonderful hot chocolate supplied by the Bay Roberts Town Councillors.
This link has some great shots of last year’s Illumination Parade and our Christmas Park.


Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Nativity:

If you have never been to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Nativity display on Central Street Bay Roberts you are missing out!! It is simple amazing, if you like to stay in touch from the real meaning for Christmas and would like to escape all the commercialism; this is the place to visit. Most of us in our homes have some sort of nativity display, but to see over 100+ displays from all over the world helps put the meaning of Christmas into perspective. The 2010 display starts tonight, December 2 ending December 9th, 6pm – 9pm.


The Bay Roberts Visitors Pavilion

In December, the Bay Roberts Visitors Pavilion turns into a Christmas wonderland!! December is a magical time at the Pavilion, the main room is adorned with decorations, wonderful aromas , music and the glowing disposition of Tourism Officer Lois Dawe to greet you. Please feel free to visit, take your camera and have your family picture taken or even get married during visiting hours!!!
Here is the schedule for “Christmas at the Pavilion 2010” I hope you have an opportunity to take in some of the events!!
Bay Roberts Pavilion link, have a look

Christmas at the Bay Roberts Pavilion
Saturday December 4th
2:00 pm Pictures with Santa sponsored by the Bay Roberts Tourism Committee at the Visitors’
Pavilion ($5,00)
Fireplace
Decorated Visitor Information Centre

Sunday December 12th and 19th
3 pm – Children’s Christmas Story Time
Join our tourism staff and special guests for an afternoon for Christmas stories and fun.

Pretty Teddy Bear
Pretty Teddy Bear


Tuesday December 14th
10 am and 2 pm – Pre-school Christmas cookie decorating at the Pavilion!!
Bring your children for some of socialization and cookie decorating.

Wednesday December 15th
10 am and 2 pm – Pre-school Christmas cookie decorating at the Pavilion!!
Bring your children for of socialization and cookie decorating.

Thursday December 16th
7: 00 Bay Roberts Christmas Sing-a-Long
An annual event celebrating the sounds of the season, refreshments served.
50+ Bus Tour stop at the Pavilion
The Bay Roberts 50+ Light Tour makes a stop for some music and refreshments during the annual Sing-a-Long!!

Friday December 17th
6:30 pm Pre-Teen PJ and Movie evening at the Pavilion!! (Ages 9-12)
Friday night, relaxing by the fireplace, sipping hot chocolate, eating popcorn while watching a Christmas movie in your PJ’s, what a Friday evening!!!! There is only a limited number of tickets available for this event, ($2. 00) . Tickets will be available at the pavilion and town council office during regular business hours. FYI 683 6377

Thursday December 30th
7:00-10pm all ages Kitchen Party at the Pavilion
Come to the Pavilion for an evening of music, dance and refreshments. Wear your mummers costume for a chance to win a prize!!! This is a family event.

Mummers with Ugly stick and spoons.
Mummers with Ugly Stick and Spoons

On December 9th, the Town of Bay Roberts will re- launch Radio Bay Robert 88.5 fm as a Christmas radio station. The station will list all the events in detail with musical interludes and greetings. From December 24 – December 30th we will be broadcasting a Christmas Special “A Newfoundland Christmas”. Please note: the radio range will be very short as this is not intended to take the place of our local radio station.

Well there ya go, a taste of that is going on in Bay Roberts this Christmas, don’t forget to visit our illumination Park or our friends in Port de Grave, their Harbour is a sight to behold.

For further information on our events please visit bayrobertschristmas.com > >