Candy Cane lane filled with holiday cheer, despite a brush with thieves

A Grinch-like act of thievery hasn’t dampened the Christmas spirit at Candy Cane lane.

A Grinch-like act of thievery hasn’t dampened the Christmas spirit at Candy Cane lane.

In fact, it ended up creating a holiday memory for organizer Damjan Madjar that will last much longer than the lights themselves.

“The day after we announced we had our laser lights stolen we had a man come by with his children, who had been to the light display before,” Madjar said.

“The kids asked him to give us their lights.”

It’s what Madjar described as a heartwarming story that reinforced what’s at the heart of his Candy Cane Lane endeavour.

He started decorating his Gramiak Road with bright and cheerful holiday inspired lights in 2011, as a way to bring cheer and build a sense of community in his neighbourhood.

“We just don’t know our neighbours like we used to,” he said, pointing out that his parents used to know everyone in the European village they were from, and if ever there was a need someone was likely to step up.

Although it’s a long way from the time and place his parents remember, Madjar said that Candy Cane Lane has built up some sense of community as he can say he knows more of his neighbours than he did before and he can see them connecting when they stroll through the display.

The other reason for the display is to collect food items for the Women’s Shelter and Freedom’s Door.

“I believe we need to give back to our community,” he said.

His goal this year is to best last year’s collection of 7,000 lbs of food. Since he started doing the annual display, he’s donated a total of 18,000 lbs of food.

“We are well on our way to surpassing last year’s goal,” he said.

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Kelowna Capital News