By Doug Schroder


Two separate events took place in Byron on Friday, Dec. 2, to kick off the Christmas season. The first was Canadian Pacific Holiday Train stop that took place at 1 p.m. This is the eighteenth year the railroad has had the Holiday Train. As in years past, two trains operate coast-to-coast under the Holiday Train banner, with approximately 150 shows held in November and December. The train that operates primarily through the U.S. launched in the Montreal area on Nov. 25, while the all-Canada train’s first shows came a day later, also in Montreal. The U.S. train will complete its final shows in Saskatchewan on Dec. 15, and the final show of the tour will take place Dec. 17 at Port Coquitlam, B.C.

“We are very excited about this year’s CP Holiday Train and are encouraging all event attendees to bring healthy, nutritious food items to the shows,” said Pam Jolliffe, Interim Executive Director, Food Banks Canada. “For the last two decades, CP has played an integral role in raising essential food for the holidays and in raising awareness of hunger-related issues.”

After the band played a few songs, Byron Mayor Chris Millard accepted a check from People Helping People for $4,000.

Every pound of food and dollar raised at each stop stays with the local food bank to help feed those in need in that community.

This is the second time the Holiday Train has come to Byron. The last time was in 2014.

A good-sized crowd came out to see the train and hear the band play.

Later that day the second holiday event took place, that being the annual Miracle on 2nd Street celebration. Hundreds of parents brought their children out to see Santa, Frosty the Snowman, and the live nativity scene.

Brownie Troops from Byron and Stillman Valley combined to carol Christmas songs in front of the Byron History Museum at 6 p.m.

Byron Bank and O’hares Hairport barbershop also featured live music by area musicians during the evening.

In years past there was a horse drawn wagon and carriage to take revelers on trips around town. This year the horses were replaced by John Deere tractors that pulled the hay wagons instead.

Members of the Byron Fire Department had a table set up where they provided fresh popped popcorn and hot chocolate to the patrons. The Byron Kiwanis also gave out freshly popped popcorn.

It was a brisk night, but not too chilly, and everyone went home with a little bit more of the Christmas cheer than they came with.



Byron Mayor Chris Millard accepts a donation from Canadian Pacific Railroad officials and the group People Helping People. The donation will be used to help area food banks.

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