A group checks out the Whoville display on a truck trailer at Western Speedway after the annual Truck Light Convoy. The 20th annual event takes place on Saturday, Dec. 1, beginning at Ogden Point at 5:45 p.m., before winding through Victoria, Saanich and the West Shore and ending at Western Speedway around 8:30 p.m. (Gazette file photo)

Annual Truck Light Convoy brightens up communities with lights and food donations

Greater Victoria event starts at Odgen Point, finishes at Western Speedway

Trucks covered in thousands of multi-coloured Christmas lights and decorations will dazzle residents young and old throughout Greater Victoria Saturday night.

Greg Warkentine, owner of Pacific Coast Power Washing, has spent days painstakingly building up his truck decorations in layers to prepare for the 20th annual Island Equipment Owners Association’s Truck Light Convoy, set for Dec. 1.

From sleigh runners, to icicles, to ground effects, the Warkentines have been fine-tuning their “Grinch’s Sleigh” for the last 12 years, participating in the annual truck convoy each year.

“It is the kids that set the whole thing apart. My wife and I, we get big warm hearts when we see the kids screaming, ‘The Grinch! The Grinch!’” said Warkentine.

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Roughly 80 trucks begin at Ogden Point at 5:45 p.m. Saturday and wind through Victoria, Colwood and Langford, before ending at Western Speedway at around 8:30 p.m. The trucks then park and the public is invited to enjoy a hotdog, hot chocolate and see the trucks up close.

In addition to the convoy, the event is a fundraiser for various food banks in the Capital Region. While residents cannot hand food to drivers during the event, there will be a number of drop-off locations set up throughout the various municipalities.

“The main focus is to spread cheer, and to get people involved in the spirit of giving,” said Warkentine

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A number of local groups, businesses and firefighters will be collecting donations the night of the event. Some include the Breakwater Café, Cook Street Village, Mustard Seed van at Clover Point, All-Ways Towing, Oak Bay Municipal Hall, View Royal Fire Department across from Helmcken Market, Colwood Fire Department, and more.

For more information, food drop off locations and to track the convoy’s progress on Dec. 1, visit IEOA website.

Donations benefit the Mustard Seed Food Bank, Goldstream Food Bank and Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank.

Over the years, the association has donated more than 154,000 pounds of food.

“It’s an amazing event. We love to do it. It’s for a good cause,” said Warkentine. “Come on out, bring some food. It’s a lot of fun.”


 

keri.coles@blackpress.ca

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Map of IEOA Truck Light Convoy route for Dec. 1. (Photo IEOA website)

Greg Warkentine (left), owner of Pacific Coast Power Washing, Denise Warkentine and Tony Jameson prepare for the Island Equipment Owners Association’s Truck Light Convoy and Food Drive on Dec. 1. (Keri Coles/News staff)

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