Upstairs at the Tec-We-Gwill Women’s Institute Hall in Newton Robinson, a transformation had taken place.
Christmas wreaths and decorations lined the walls. Tables and chairs were covered in elegant linens, in colors of green, gold and white. A fully decorated Christmas tree stood on the hall’s stage beside a red throne.
The Newton Robinson Council and community decorated the space for a Christmas celebration and potluck lunch on Saturday. It was thanks to new residents Paul and Katrina Platonov, who operate the event linen rental business Decor-Rent.com, that the setting was more elegant and festive than it has ever been.
“They set this up out of the goodness of their hearts,” said Newton Robinson’s unofficial mayor, Tyler Philp, waving a hand at the hall. “We were in here yesterday for hours – an army of people - and put it all together.”
“We call ourselves elves,” said Paul Platonov, with a smile.
Not only were there elves, there was Santa.
Santa Claus arrived after the lunch, to visit with all of his youngest fans as they shared their Christmas wishes. He handed out small gifts to the children – and posed for selfies, with some of his older followers. Approximately 60 residents and guests attended.
It was another successful celebration put together by Newton Robinson’s unofficial “town council,” established to bring residents together at festive times of year, and build a sense of community.