SIX DAYS TO GO… Follow the ‘Nutcracker Trail’ on Erdington High Street and see the Christmas lights ‘switch on’ – Thursday 24 November

Words by Ed King / Images supplied by EBID, Ceol Agency, & UP Creative

Erdington’s festive season officially begins on Thursday 24 November, with the Christmas lights ‘switch on’ event taking place on Erdington High Street – running from 4pm to 7pm and completely free to attend.

But bringing extra Christmas cheer to the High Street this winter season, a special ‘Nutcracker Trail’ has been organised by the local UP Creative Community and supported by Erdington Business Improvement District (EBID)

Hiding across Erdington High Street this December will be eight Christmas Nutcracker Dolls, inviting you to find them as part of a Nutcracker Trail competition, with a special price donated by the Erdington Rotary Club.

But don’t worry, the Nutcrackers will be about 10ft tall – so even the smallest explorer can have fun trying to find them.

Made by the local Up Creative Community, a ‘collaborative of local artists who offer sustainable textile waste management’, the Nutcrackers are fashioned from recycled plastic and decorated in the traditional toy solider style.

Helen Waite from UP Creative Community told Erdington Local: “According to German folklore, Nutcrackers were given as keepsakes to bring luck to the family and protect the home.

“It is said that they represent strength and power and watch over the family keeping evil spirits and danger away.

“On our Nutcracker Trail, each guards a gift and the letters upon the gift spell out a winter themed word.

“Once you have completed the trail and work out the word, return your answers to the BID volunteers who will reward you with your own Christmas pressie.

“UP’s vision is to bring creative change for people and planet.

“We aim to normalise conscious consumption and showcase how with a little creativity and resourcefulness we can make items that are destined for landfill into beautiful pieces of art which can be celebrated.

“The Nutcrackers are an example of this, having been made from discarded bins and vinyl offcuts.

“The original four are lovingly named, John, Ringo, George, and Paul, we are looking for names for the new four.”

Gary Dancer from the Erdington Rotary Club added: “Rotary Club of Erdington are delighted to donate a prize for the Nutcracker Trail competition.

“This is a great community event, and we always seek support activities in our own community.”

The Nutcracker Trail competition is suitable for children of any age and completely free to enter.

For more on the Nutcracker Trail and all the Christmas events coming to the High Street visit www.facebook.com/erdingtonBID

For mor on UP Creative Community visit www.theupcreativecommunity.org

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