The Basics for Babies fundraiser is about helping infants – from struggling families throughout the Lower Mainland – have a Merry Christmas. But this Sunday’s event is also about family fun. Last year’s event offered people a chance to play in inflatable toys and meet mascots.

Basics for Babies at home in Langley

JRfm hosts its biggest family-fun fundraiser of the year at Langley Events Centre.

Who wouldn’t want to see a free concert with great local performers? Pair that up with Santa, a silent auction, bouncy castles and a lot more, and it’s the makings of the JRfm Holiday Fun Day benefitting Basics for Babies on Sunday Dec. 18 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Langley Events Centre.

Tara Paredes is the promotions director for the radio station and noted this is her 13th year working on Basics for Babies, which is in its 22nd year.

“I believe this may be our best year yet,” she said. “Between the lineup of artists we have joining us, the crew at the Langley Events Centre and all of our partners this year, I’m hoping for a record year.”

Basics for Babies is a partnership between JRfm and Food Banks BC. There are always families in need and when there is a little one in the household that need can feel overwhelming. Funds raised on Dec. 18 will provide families with children under age two with diapers, formula, baby food and more through local food banks.

Members of the Langley Firefighters Charitable Association will collect the admissions (by donation) at the door.

The music starts at 11:10 a.m. with Kelowna girl and CCMA Discovery Artist Raquel Cole and adds Langley’s own Aaron Prichett at 1:40 p.m. along with five other performers throughout the day including two secret performers Paredes will only describe as being from Langley and among Canada’s biggest country stars.

Facepainting will be by donation, Mike the Reptile Guy will bring a few of his friends, and look for members of the BC Lions and Felions Dance Team. The Langley Gymnastics Foundation will also provide a gymnastics circuit and Tumblebus will offer up a number of gymnastics activities as well.

“We will be broadcasting live again and Santa will be on-hand for free photos,” Paredes said.

The silent auction promises to be competitive with items like invitations to the JR Live Lounge for all shows in 2017, concert tickets and a signature guitar autographed by the likes of Keith Urban, Brad Paisley, Kenny Chesney, Brothers Osborne and many more.

“I’m a mom, I have six and nine-year-olds and I can’t imagine not being able to provide what they need,” Paredes said of what drives her passion for the event. “Most parents I know feel inadequate on a pretty regular basis already. Add financial stress to that and it’s 100 times harder.”

The majority of items donated at the event will stay in Langley with some being shared with Surrey and other smaller food banks served out of the Surrey hub location. All funds raised will add to the overall donations for Basics for Babies and will be given to Food Banks BC to distribute to the 11 partner food banks from Vancouver to Chilliwack.

“We designed the event to be a fun family event that can cost whatever you can afford and that helps the community at the same time,” noted Paredes. “It’s about fun, most of all, and being together at the time of year that can be hardest for many.”

Those who can’t make the Sunday event can still contribute by dropping items off at Boyd Autobody and Glass or donating online at jrfm.com.

 

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