By James Rose,

Special to the Pioneer

The Winter season and all the wonderful holiday activities and events planned for the Columbia Valley is right around the corner.

But not until the Invermere area celebrates its annual community Light Up event on Saturday, November 19th does the holiday season officially kick into high gear.

The theme of this years Light Up is A Traditional Mountain Christmas, said co-organizer Jocelyn Brunner. We did not do a theme last year but have done something similar in years past. We thought it would be nice to go old school because we live in a world where we are connected through our smart phones, and social media but rarely get a chance to connect in person.

This years theme will also make for some interesting clothing choices from various shopkeers. Don’t be surprised to see many shopkeepers in early 1900’s dress and carols playing throughout the street, said co-organizer Theresa Wood.

Light Up this year is about old school traditions and making that face to face connection. It’s a night to spend with your community, gathered around fires, roasting marshmallows, walking through our amazing downtown shops, enjoying local food, carolling, meeting Santa, and watching the parade and the lighting of the tree, said Ms. Brunner.

The schedule of events for the celebration is as follows: 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. pictures with Santa at the Invermere Best Western ($10 proceeds going to the Christmas Bureau of the Columbia Valley); 5 p.m. Santa Claus Parade (from Pothole park to the Bank of Montreal); 6 p.m. lighting of the tree at the Cenotaph; Shopping and dining specials throughout the day. T,here will also be fires, hot chocolate, smores and festivities along 7th Avenue starting at 3 p.m. and carols by candlelight following the official Light Up.

As in years past, there will be numerous fire pits at the event with straw bales for seating and marshmallows for roasting. On Sunday, the Legion will also be hosting a pancake breakfast for everyone to enjoy.