On December 7, 2015, an amazing event came to the town of Hardisty and we at Recon were very fortunate to be a part of it. Recon was deciding what to do to celebrate Christmas in such a different economy than we had been used to. We had been discussing a quaint get-together at our office; with a locally available horse-drawn wagon and delicious meal. Additionally, we made the decision to instead of purchasing client gifts such as food trays, chocolates;; rather we would do a donation to the Flagstaff Food Bank in leiu of those usual Christmas gifts.
It was a couple of weeks later, that we caught wind that the CP Rail Christmas Train Food Bank Drive was making a stop in Hardisty on December 7th; and things fell completely into place. Recon would not only donate but alsotake part in helping the Town bring in the CP Rail Christmas train with a bang. Many weeks of planning and meetings with Town officials and other town business people brought about the largest celebration we have seen in Hardisty in quite some time.
A long, steady stream of vehicles came pouring into town from each entrance into town. There were many town events and downtown businesses open late for Moonlight Madness shopping. Campfires with hot chocolate and hotdogs being served. Hardisty School Christmas Carollers singing by the fire. Recon decorated a side-by-side and wagon with Christmas lights and brought the Recon families in to town for the festivities. Our Lead Operator Artie Veith did an absolutely incredible job with decorating one of our newest trucks and it was quite a dazzling spectacle to join the celebrations downtown.
Once the sun had been down for a couple of hours; the excitement became even more palpable as we were told the train was going past the tank farm. Everyone made their final way down to the closest, safest area to watch this exciting event transpire. It was goose-bump inducing to see the train make its way through the river valley to its final stop at the Hardisty Train Station area. Not long after the train stopped, one of the lit up rail cars wall gradullay opened up to make a stage with incredible musical artists immediately starting to entertain the large crowd with their fresh, lively sound. Our 3 office Admins made their way onto the stage during the donation presentations and Recon’s generous donation was made therein.
The night went off without a hitch; and it truly was a night to be remembered by all who attended for many years to come. I know that if you ask our main Christmas Train Extravaganza volunteer HSE Coordinator Christie Swainson; she will gladly go watch the CP Rail Holiday train in another town this year and relax from the planning part of things I am sure. Here are some of the pictures of those memories we have to share.