Holiday Window Walk brings festive fun to downtown London

A window display at Jonathon Bancroft-Snell Gallery. Jake Jeffrey/Global News

Local creatives, a theatre, and a business improvement area are teaming up to offer a new holiday experience that organizers say still adheres to public health measures in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Holiday Window Walk in downtown London, Ont., combines visual displays and audio performances to tell the story of SPIRIT “as they find meaning in this unprecedented holiday season,” organizers say.

“As SPIRIT looks back at how well we have adapted over this past year, from knitting scarves to baking fancy cakes, they uncover the true strength that resides within each of us.”

Read more: Coronavirus: Holiday activities for London, Ont., families to enjoy

Writer and director Megan Watson, artistic associate at the Grand Theatre, calls the Holiday Window Walk an “inspiring creative challenge.”

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“I felt compelled to write something that acknowledges the moment we are in, but also searches for the beauty and unexpected joy of 2020.”

Organizers say the walk can be completed whenever, but is “extra magical” after dark.

Part of the display at Grace Restaurant. Jake Jeffrey/Global News

The walk includes eight downtown storefronts.

Each storefront includes a window display, as well as a QR code that can be scanned to listen to audio stories on your smartphone.

Each audio story is about three minutes long and organizers say the entire walk takes about 45 to 60 minutes to complete.

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The Holiday Window Walk is put on by Curveball Creative and sponsored by Downtown London. The Grand Theatre also donated props and lighting equipment for the project.

“As London heads into the red zone, it’s more important than ever to provide safe entertainment that keeps us connected to our city and community,” said Curveball Creative’s Lauren Rebelo and Daniel Bennett in a release.

“We also prioritized paying artists local to London to help them make it through these challenging times.”

Read more: Video capturing 150 skaters on crowded ice rink in London, Ont. prompts greater monitoring

Downtown London executive director Barbara Maly says the BIA is encouraging Londoners to head downtown to check out the window displays and to stop in at shops along the way.

The story starts at CommonWealth Coffee Co. on Richmond Street north of Fullarton Street; then moves to David E. White men’s wear at the corner of Richmond Street and Queens Avenue; then to Attic Books, Jonathon Bancroft-Snell Gallery, Grace Restaurant, and Gnosh Dining + Cocktails, all on Dundas Street; and then to King Street at the Downtown London BIA itself and finally ending at Covent Garden Market, at the window facing the skating rink.

The walk will run until the end of December.

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A map of the Holiday Window Walk. Jake Jeffrey/Global News

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