Last Saturday saw thousands turn out to watch the beloved tradition of Camana Bay’s annual Tree Lighting. As Santa pushed the lever to “on” and the town lit up into a Christmas wonderland, Saint Nick also officially kicked off a busy calendar of holiday events at Camana Bay.
Along with this busy calendar, the season is also launching the start of the Camana Bay Christmas Give, an annual initiative to help the community give back to those in need to help provide a merry Christmas for all.
This year, the Christmas Give benefits Cayman Food Bank, which seeks to end island-wide hunger, malnutrition and poverty. Cayman Food Bank takes a different approach to traditional food banks by freezing perishable foods before distributing them to food pantries throughout the island, thereby minimising food waste.
“We are trying to link two problems we have – immense food waste and people going hungry,” explained Woody Foster, a founding member of Cayman Food Bank and managing director at Foster’s supermarkets, which is heavily involved in the food bank’s work, donating much of the food that is distributed throughout the year. “There’s still a lot more to be done, but it is rewarding to see food being put to use rather than wasted.”
Cayman Food Bank had its ribbon cutting in December 2017, so this Christmas will mark the organisation’s two-year anniversary, Mr. Foster added. However, it has already enjoyed significant growth. “Within the second half of our first year of operations, we were able to coordinate distribution of the food to those in need through food pantries located at churches across the island,” he explained. “We currently have six pantries we donate food to, and we also work with the Needs Assessment Unit.”
Support Cayman Food Bank’s valuable work by attending the Cayman Islands premiere of the much-anticipated sequel, Frozen 2. The film will first show on Grand Cayman this Thursday, 21 November at Camana Bay Cinema, in a special screening starting at 6 p.m.
Tickets are CI$25 or families can take advantage of a family pack of four tickets for CI$80. If ticket buyers bring a non-perishable food donation to the Visitor Centre when collecting their tickets, they will also receive a voucher for a free small popcorn and drink combo. For more details, call +1.345.640.4000.
Stop by the Visitor Centre any time throughout the holiday season to collect a reusable Camana Bay bag. Included with it will be a copy of Cayman Food Bank’s reverse advent calendar, with daily suggestions of food items to donate. If you fill the bag and return it to the Visitor Centre, all food will be sent to the food bank to be distributed.
Other initiatives going on throughout the season include a fun cascading coin race in the cinema lobby, where children (and adults!) can donate spare change, and a Festive Dress Down Day, which sees those who work in Camana Bay dressing in their festive gear in exchange for a donation to the Give.
Also, register the whole family to participate in Cayman Food Bank’s Santa Run on Saturday, 14 December at 6:30 a.m. This jolly jog around the Camana Bay Town Centre is full of festive fun, and proceeds from registration fees benefit the Give. Registration forms are available at the Camana Bay Visitor Centre on Market Street, or online at camanabay.com.
“We need to raise funds year round, but especially at Christmas time you want to be sure people have food on the table,” Mr. Foster added. “Working with Camana Bay on the Christmas Give is a great way for us to achieve this goal at this time of year.”
ABOUT CAMANA BAY
A destination within a destination, Camana Bay is a vibrant town located in the heart of Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands, a British Overseas Territory.
Situated on 685 acres between Seven Mile Beach and the North Sound, this mixed-use master-planned community is one of the first examples of New Urbanism in the Caribbean.
Developed by Dart Real Estate, Camana Bay offers more than 650,000 square feet of commercial office and retail space as well as 63 luxury apartments available for long-term lease, public spaces for all to enjoy, world-class shopping and dining, as well as family-friendly entertainment, events and attractions.