Community Christmas Party

11 December 2023

Community Christmas Party 

The weather for our Community Christmas Party on Sunday 10 December was kinder to us than last year; although wet and blustery, it was at least not cold.  

A large and enthusiastic group of Stoics arrived in North Hall ready to undertake all the tasks required to run a successful Christmas Party, with guidance from a great group of staff who all gave up their Sunday afternoon to help. This year the Community Christmas Party, the biggest in our history, moved back to the refurbished state dining room, and we filled the room with around 150 elderly local residents.  

The Stoics transformed the Dining Room with tablecloths, Christmas crackers, bingo cards, raffle tickets, decorations and festive touches, whilst others prepared the raffle prizes and bingo equipment.  

As the guests arrived, the Stoics went out in the rain to direct traffic, and with large umbrellas, welcome guests and help them in from their vehicles. Tea and biscuits were served in the Music Room while everyone arrived, before moving into the State Dining Room for the main event. With a very full room and everyone in high festive spirits, proceedings started with a welcome from Rev Righetti, before Christmas Carols were sung with great gusto by lots of Stoic singers and the guests, to the brilliant piano playing of Jonathan Kingston (Director of Chapel Music & Head of Vocal). 

Afternoon tea was served by a vast swathe of enthusiastic and professional Stoics under the guidance and assistance of the Catering Department. The treats on offer were outstanding and the guests tucked in with gusto and soon polished off every last morsel.  

Following tea, it was time to get the games under way. Dr Wallersteiner was once again persuaded to call the bingo; he was great as usual, making some very amusing calls which I’m not sure were all straight from the bingo callers manual! So many Stoics were on hand to help, one spun the wheel to release the balls, others noted all the numbers, fetched and check the winning lines when BINGO was called, and prizes were delivered with a smile. 

When it came time to do the raffle, we were once again inundated with Stoics who wanted to do the draw, announce the winning tickets numbers and ensure the appropriate prizes were selected and delivered to the winners. 

Finally, to round the day off, Dr “Santa” Webber came flying into the dining room like a force of nature, Ho-Ho-Ho-ing and ringing his bell whilst handing out the gifts, ably supported by a swarm of Stoic “elves”, to each visitor, before ending the day with resounding leadership of ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’. 

The contribution of every single Stoic was absolutely brilliant, and I hope we can say that this is the best community Christmas Party we have hosted; the enthusiasm was astounding, and I congratulate you all. Thank you too, to all the Staff who contributed so much to the event.