Christmas at McTavish Market gets bigger

Visitors of McTavish Market on the corner of McTavish and East Saanich Road won’t be able to miss the 50 sq. ft. Christmas display while getting their groceries.

Conan Chee, third-generation owner of McTavish Market, said the display, which features lights and a moving train set this year, is a hit with the community.

Chee has not always been a Christmas fan, but he had an unexplained change of heart five years ago.

“I don’t know, maybe something changed inside me. I don’t know.”

He acquired the bulk of the setup five years ago and had been re-arranging it each year in his own living room, but he brought it to the store last year. He was unsure if he would set it up again, but when a resident of Dean Park dropped off a starter train set when Chee was away from the store, that sealed the deal.

“One day she came in and asked, ‘are you setting up the Christmas Village this year?’ and my brother was like, ‘Maybe,’, and she goes, ‘why not?’”

She then revealed herself to be the donor. Chee thanked the woman, and after 36 hours of set up, the expanded display is up and running. If eagle-eyed patrons spot a small Santa holding a gift, they are encouraged to enter into a draw for toys and prizes, all to thank the community for supporting the business, which the Chee family have operated for 40 years.

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