The B. Gingerbread Homes event has its sights set on a $5,000 fundraising target.
Presented by B. Gallant Homes, the event at Vancouver Island Conference Centre began Nov. 25 with the Santa Fly-In and concluded Dec. 16, with all proceeds going to the Salvation Army in Nanaimo. As of Wednesday afternoon, Christyna Chapman, event co-organizer, said $4,200 had been raised with more money coming in.
Chapman said organizers were able to ramp up the activities this year, with everything from the gingerbread house display, photos with Santa Claus by donation and cookie decorating.
“Last year we raised just around $2,000 and we’re aiming for $5,000 this year and we are on course to almost get there … we’re hoping to really get some great numbers in and you know what? With everybody’s help I wouldn’t be surprised if [Nanaimo] came through for us,” said Chapman.
Over 1,500 people came through the conference centre doors this year, according to Chapman, with 400 families visiting with Santa Claus and more than 400 cookies decorated.
The Downtown Nanaimo Business Improvement Association had helped in the past, but with its dissolution, volunteers stepped up to assist B. Gallant Homes, Chapman said.
More than 30 volunteers were involved, and in all, there were over 260 volunteer hours combined and more than 30 businesses got involved to make the event happen, said Chapman.
In the B. Gingerbread Homes competition, best builder and people’s choice winner was L.A.S.T. Concrete Pumping. The holiday spirit and best use of materials awards were given to Coastal Community Credit Union Insurance. Suite-Est (sweetest) entry went to WITS End Solutions and most local went to the Old City Quarter.