300,000 spectators welcome Santa at 16th annual downtown parade

VANCOUVER officially kicked off the start of the holiday season on Sunday as 300,000 spectators gathered in Vancouver for the TELUS presents the Vancouver Santa Claus Parade. The crowd that lined the 1.8-km route were entertained by more than 2,500 participants, including more than 40 marching bands, choirs, floats and community groups.

Photos submitted

In addition to bringing the joy of the Christmas season to thousands of children and families along the parade route, the 16th annual parade also celebrated the spirit of giving by generating much needed donations for those in need across the Lower Mainland through its support of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society, as well as the CKNW Kids’ Fund, which enhances the lives of children living with physical, mental and social challenges in B.C.

The Food Bank provides healthy food to more than 28,000 people each week, and both the parade and TELUS are long-time supporters of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. Over the last 20 years, TELUS has supported the Greater Vancouver Food Bank with more than $1 million and 10,000 volunteer hours, and to further support the Food Bank during a very busy time of year, TELUS will match monetary donations and will donate $5 for each free download of the Babylon By TELUS Health app on parade day,  up to $15,000. 

“The Santa Claus Parade brings the community together to mark the start of the holiday season, and there’s a magic in the air when we are all connected,” says Jill Schnarr, TELUS Vice President of Corporate Citizenship and Communications. “The Greater Vancouver Food Bank desperately needs our support to ensure local families do not struggle to put food on the table this holiday season. Building upon the more than $1 million TELUS has already donated to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, TELUS is proud to match all monetary donations made to the Food Bank on Parade Day.”

In addition to the parade, the day’s festivities included a Breakfast with Santa event at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver and a holiday entertainment zone at Christmas Square in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery, which featured a Food Bank drop off, face painting, festive crafts and activities for kids and a Letters to Santa station. Following the parade, families were treated to free photos with Santa at TELUS Garden.

Christmas fans who attended the parade and spectators who would like to enjoy it again can watch province-wide broadcasts of the TELUS presents the Vancouver Santa Claus Parade on Global BC and BC1. (See below for broadcast times and dates or visit the parade website for details.)

“On behalf of our organizing committee, our participants and our spectators, I want to thank TELUS for their generous support which makes the parade possible,” said Vancouver Santa Claus Parade Society President Jessica Walker. “I also want to thank the many other companies, organizations, volunteers and participants that make this parade such a wonderful holiday tradition.”


Parade broadcast dates and times:

Global: December 14, 25 and 26. Times TBD.

Detailed broadcast dates and times will be posted on the parade website.