Wee Toon Winter Walk lights up unusual Christmas

Campbeltown Courier opinion.

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An initiative encouraging people to safely travel around Campbeltown to see the best festively decorated homes has added some sparkle to a different kind of Christmas.

The Wee Toon Winter Walk has shone a spotlight on the area’s incredible community spirit which has endured throughout the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, demonstrating that, whatever the circumstances, the people of Kintyre will find a way to come together in spirit, even if they are forced to remain physically apart.

Mandy Robertson, the woman behind the initiative, was inspired by the HalloWee Toon Witch Walk, a similar scheme set up by her nieces Shannon Brodie and Heather Mauchline at Hallowe’en.

Mandy explained: ‘Due to Covid, they knew young people wouldn’t be able to participate in the usual ‘trick or treat’, so they wanted to create something that they could still be excited about.

‘The idea was for people to walk round with family members or friends – while following guidance regarding socially distancing – to look at the decorations. There were lots of amazing houses decorated – far more than usual.’

Mandy described the feedback from the Hallowe’en event as ‘fantastic’, with many requests for a Christmas-themed walk.

As her nieces were both too busy to organise this themselves – Shannon sitting university examinations in Glasgow and Heather running her own online craft business – Mandy decided to take the reins.

‘My other niece, Anna Brodie, volunteers with me at The Hub, so we decided we would take this on so everyone could still participate,’ Mandy said. ‘There has been a fantastic response once again.

‘We have 37 homes and businesses included on the map with an activity sheet on the reverse. The homes that have participated are amazing – I think there is an element of friendly neighbourhood competition too!

‘Christmas is such a special time, so we wanted to give people another chance to get together while being out and about, making it a special event instead of just going a run round in the car.

‘Looking at the light shows outside people’s homes was something I always did when my boys were small. I don’t know who enjoyed it more – them or me!’

Maps showing the participating homes are available from The Kintyre Larder and Keeping It Local, with an online version available from the Wee Toon Winter Walk Facebook page.