For the past 30 or 40 years the Raymond Rotary Club has extended an open invitation to people of all religious backgrounds.
The event will be held at the Raymond LDS Cultural Hall and will begin at 6 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15.
“This year our community Carol Festival is being joined by the Baptist Church Choir as well,” said organizer Val Boehme.
Last year residents were asked to bring a non-perishable food item to help the club reach their goal of 500 pounds, donated. They surpassed this and hit 525 pounds, total last year.
“This year we are just promoting that we would like to receive 500 pounds again before we set a new goal,” Boehme said.
“The Rotary Club uses February for its food bank drive and we have chosen this venue because it has served us well so we don’t have to go back out in February.”
Fan favourites like the Sugar Beets and Raymond High School Show Choir will of course be performing a few numbers.
“The first choir that will perform is RES . . . there will also be a choral ensemble, and one of the LDS congregations has a choir, the Raymond eighth-ward young mens choir,” Boehme said.
The high school band will also get a chance to play again, and both the junior and senior Raymond Elementary School Choirs will be performing a few numbers each.
“The junior choir are grades two and three and the senior choir is grades four, five and six,” said music teacher at RES Julie Vereschagin. “We have (performed in the Carol Festival) for the last four or five years.”
The young choirs typically choose their music for the festival in early spring and begin rehearsing in September.
“We want to emphasize that it’s a community carol festival. It may be held in the Cultural Hall, but it’s a community event and we invite the whole community to it,” Boehme said. “This year especially, we want to invite new families or individuals who haven’t attended this in the past and may not be aware we do this.”
The Raymond Chamber of Commerce will also utilize the hall to disperse awards for the first, second and third best residential light displays, in addition to one rural award as well.
“For us it’s just another way that we provide a service to the community,” he said. “One of the things the Rotary Club says is ‘peace through service,’ and this is a good time of year to emphasize peace.”