Lilly Jorgensen

Active Life: Nanaimo families can ring in 2017 under the big top

NANAIMO – Parks and recreation department is inviting families to ring in 2017 at Beban Park in a carnival-like atmosphere.

The City of Nanaimo Parks, Recreation and Environment department is inviting families to ring in 2017 at Beban Park in a carnival-like atmosphere.

The Under the Big Top New Year’s Eve event is set to take place Dec. 31 at Beban’s pool and social centre, as well as Frank Crane Arena, from 5-10 p.m., said Michele Duerksen, city recreation coordinator.

Skating, swimming and events at the social centre will be among festivities. Duerksen said the Purple Pirate, Clever Trevor – both children’s entertainers – and the Doctors of Rock ‘n Roll will be on hand to perform. People can get some exercise, with the skating and the swimming, and then they can head over to the social centre for crafts and more fun, she said.

“We’ll do some face-painting, we have Monkey Business Gymnastics school coming, so they’ll actually get to practise being a clown or being an acrobat and we have a bouncy castle coming and lots of fun, interactive activities. Low stress for parents, get your kids tired out and head back to home and watch the ball drop on TV,” said Duerksen.

Seeing as the city is catering to the family demographic, the event won’t go until midnight and there will be two new year countdowns, with the earlier one for parents with smaller children.

“If you have a younger family and they’re just tired out, which is great, you can go home after our 8 p.m. countdown in the social centre or we also have one that is at 10 p.m.,” said Duerksen.

With the circus theme, Duerksen even suggests having families getting in costume.

“Come and dress up if you’d like, that’d be kind of fun. Wear your big top hat, or wear your clown hair, have lots of fun. If people want to dress up, that would be fun. All the staff are going to dress up,” said Duerksen.

Fair-type food, such as hot dogs and cotton candy, will be available for purchase as well.

Players from the Nanaimo Clippers B.C. Hockey League team will also be on hand to take part in the skate.

Tickets are $32 for a family of five, $10 per person, with children two years old and younger getting in for free. Tickets are available now at Beban Park.

For more information, please call 250-756-5200.

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