Santa Claus comes to Sandy Lake parade
Santa Claus (Wayne Kakepetum) allows a child to take a gift from his sack.
One of the many floats during Sandy Lake’s Christmas parade on Dec. 6.
Sandy Lake First Nation held it’s annual Christmas parade on Dec.6.
The parade was a combined effort of departments from the band office (Welfare Corporation, Health, Education, and Recreation) and other organizations, like Nishtum Kikinoamatowin Head Start.
Seth Fiddler, an employee of Sandy Lake Recreation, said that he helped make the float for Santa Claus – who was played by Sandy Lake counselor Wayne Kakepetum.
“Everyone in the band office got together to help make the float,” Fiddler said.
Fiddler said that his favourite part was seeing the children of Sandy Lake converge together in groups in different parts of the parade route. He said that the floats were passing out candies for the children.
“They (the children) gathered up on the road, they all got together,” Fiddler said. “Their houses are separate from each other and they got together in one pack and they all got to get candies.”
“It was good seeing the Elders come out to grab candies, too,” Fiddler added.
Fiddler said that the parade has been going on for decades.
“They used to have Ski-Doo trains, too,” he said.
Kristen McKay, a member of the Sandy Lake Youth Council, said that she thought the parade was good.
“There were a lot of different floats,” McKay said. “One float had a theme where it required a stove and smoke was even coming out.”
“It was fun, but so cold,” McKay said.
Paige Fiddler also had to contend with the cold as she snapped photos of the parade.
“My hands were frozen, I left my mitts in the truck because I couldn’t get a good grip on my shutter button,” Paige said. “But I got used to it (the cold) after a while.”
“There was Christmas Spirit in the air, everyone had a smile on their face,” Paige said.
The band office donated cash prizes for the top three floats this year.
McKay said that Nishtum Kikinoamatowin Head Start won first place for its float.
“Nishtum gave out beans and bannock to the older people,” McKay said of Nishtum’s float.
Fiddler said that he is glad that everyone helped out this year for the parade, especially the businesses and organizations.
“It was great seeing all of the kids faces smile,” Fiddler said.
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