Oppressive heat and smoke from bushfires did not deter a large crowd from gathering in Vickery Park in Boggabri for the annual Carols in the Park.

Thanks to sponsors, there was a free steak or sausage sandwich, cold drink, glitter tattoos and a candles made available to everyone who attended.

While waiting for the carols to begin, those present were entertained by members of the Gunnedah Conservatorium.

Carols were coordinated by Rev Nick Stone and volunteers from St Barnabas Community Church along with the Gunnedah Shire Band.

During the evening and interspersed among the tradition carols, the Boggabri Preschool and Nurruby, along with Boggabri Public School and Sacred Heart Primary School sang songs and carols.

The talented St Barnabas Singers, lead the singing in Rudolph the Red-nosed-reindeer and Frosty the Snowman, while the children acted out the lyrics and played the game.

A story and song, On that very first Christmas gave the attendees as well as the children an opportunity to participate in an activity together.

Carols included, O Come all ye Faithful, While Shepherds Watched, Angels We Have Heard on High, Joy to the World, Infant Holy, Silent Night, Feliz Navidad, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.

During the singing of the Aussie Jingle Bells, Rev Nick Stone and Dougie Watson drove Mullaley’s Public School’s Rusty Ute along the line of children representing and supplying the esky, kelpie, singlet, shorts and thongs. Kangaroos, swaggie, barbecue, family, Uncle Bruce and finally a family snap.

Children were shaking bells and everyone else was singing very loudly during the traditional Jingle Bells and Jingle Bell Rock songs.

A few of the talented St Barnabas singers sang the first verse of Silent Night in German, which was very well received by the attendees.

The last carol, We wish you a Merry Christmas, was sung with gusto, finishing the evening on a joyful note.

Boggabri is a very lucky, well supported and coordinated community that saw volunteers transport the band to and from Gunnedah, the park lit up with spotlights and sound system and people willing to stand in extreme temperatures to cook on the barbecue.

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