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Hundreds of Kids Celebrate The Holiday Season in Lansdowne, WhoVille

Updated: Dec 20, 2023



Brantford, ON - The tall and small gathered Sunday in Brantford’s children’s treatment centre, when the Rotary Club of Brantford partnered with Lansdowne Children’s Centre staff and volunteers to present the 2023 edition of the annual children’s holiday party.

Snapshots from Welcome to WhoVille! at Lansdowne Children's Centre.

Scroll down for photo booth photos taken at the North Pole, sponsored by Rotary Club of Brantford

Nicole Counsell and family were thrilled to take part in what’s become an annual tradition for them, too. 

“The kids loved it!! You guys [Lansdowne] outdo yourselves every year. My family is so thankful for our Lansdowne Family.”

The children’s party is a no-charge event for Lansdowne client families, sponsored by Rotary Club of Brantford. Each year, a team of volunteers give their time and talent to decorate and outfit the event with gifts, activities and experiences, for children and youth who access resources, services and support at Lansdowne Children’s Centre.

Rita-Marie Hadley is executive director of Lansdowne Children’s Centre, and was thrilled to welcome families to an in-person celebration, building on last year’s Polar Express party.

“This is the happiest day of the year for a lot of our team. It’s a wonderful time to experience the hundreds of bright smiles, and wide eyes, taking in the decorations and fun. This is one of our favourite days to give to our clients and our community.” 

This year’s Welcome to WhoVille event featured characters, decorations, and games, inspired by the stories of Dr. Seuss. The Grinch himself greeted child and youth guests, and their families, who toured the building at 39 Mount Pleasant Street participating in acts of holiday cheer that included One Fish, Two Fish, Catch a Fish! and Pin the Heart on The Grinch. 

Crystal Winegarden, a parent who attended, was left very impressed with the event’s presentation.

“This was a really fun event! So much work (was) put into it! The decorations were gorgeous and the boys loved their stuffy and colouring book!”

Supporting partners to the Lansdowne children’s party included Boston Pizza Brantford South, Starbucks West Brant, and local PetSmart stores. PetSmart ran a multi-week campaign leading up to the event in order to donate the hundreds of new plush toys that hoped to find a forever home with new friends.

Jennifer White, executive director of Lansdowne Children’s Centre Foundation, was part of the team that brought the new toys to Lansdowne for sharing with children and youth.

“Our friends at PetSmart are amazing. These new toys are so soft, so cuddly. They’re just excellent for a soothing hug and I’m sure our kids will love them.”

A trip to the North Pole was also a part of the WhoVille experience, where guests had opportunity to snap a photo with Queen Elsa, and sit down to talk wish lists with Santa and Mrs. Claus. One of the most precious moments was watching Mrs. Claus, communicate with children using ASL - american sign language.

Find more event photos on our Lansdowne Children's Centre Facebook Page -

Lansdowne Children’s Centre Board Chair John Bradford, who bears a strong resemblance to the jolly elf who posed for photos with hundreds of families, expressed his fond memories of the annual children’s party.

“This day, these faces, it’s a reminder of what we’re all here for. For the kids. Our outstanding volunteers, and all our exceptional community partners, and our amazing Lansdowne staff, all share that same motivation. To support all these kids, and their families, so that they can reach their potential.”

North Pole Photo Gallery, presented by Rotary Club of Brantford

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