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Our islands are gearing up for Christmas with an array of special promotions, parades and events, leading to the ‘big day’ on Tuesday the 25th of December.

The business houses of Dunwich on North Stradbroke Island are leading the way with the innovative Dunwich Christmas Giveaway.

The promotion is designed to give business at Dunwich a shot in the arm prior to Christmas, and to provide some fun and interest for shoppers on North Stradbroke Island.

And to offer an incentive to ‘Shop Dunwich’ this Christmas, the group have combined to offer prizes and rewards in excess of $2000. To qualify, all you have to do is to spend at least $20 at any of the participating stores and you can enter in the draw. The more purchases, the more chances to win.

The prizes will be drawn at 4pm on Christmas Eve, giving some islanders an extra special 2018 Christmas surprise.

Macleay Island is also getting into the swing of things with the annual Macleay Island Lions Club Annual Christmas Parade to again be held on Saturday 8th December.

This is a popular event at this time every year with many island businesses and groups expected to take part.

The parade starts from the Macleay Island State School at 10 am. Participants will gather from 9.15 am.

The parade will conclude at the Lions Markets at the Macleay Island Community Centre with Santa Claus the highlight of the parade.

Club Macleay and the Bay Islands Golf Club are also holding Christmas parties leading up to the big event.

On Russell Island, the ever reliable Russell Island Singers will again herald in Christmas 2018 in a very traditional way with the Christmas Carols at St Peter’s Hall, Russell Island, Friday 14th December, at 7pm.

There are also Christmas events at both the Russell Island RSL Club and the Russell Island Bowls Club.

On Coochiemudlo Island they always are very imaginative and we are told the tinnies are iced down, (the ones that haven’t got motors that is!), the nibblies are nibbling and Santa is on his way for the annual Christmas Eve gathering on Coochie’s Main Beach!

A long standing tradition on the island, Christmas Eve sees hundreds of locals and visitors congregating on Main Beach near the Coochie jetty for a delightful dusk mingling of people with the Christmas spirit

Santa arrives by a boat all decked out with lights just on dark to the delight of the hundreds of kids in attendance. What island fun!

On Lamb Island on Saturday December 8, the Recreation Club are running a colouring competition for kids, and the ‘firies’ go around on the truck closer to Christmas Day with lollies for the kids and Santa on the truck. Wait outside your home for the sound of the siren!

Next year on Lamb the community is hoping to run a Christmas Lights event!

On Karragarra, a renowned ‘party island’, the islanders will be doing their ‘own thing’ which, we are told, is always traditional fun.

At both the Post Offices on Macleay Island and Russell Island, Australia Post has provided a special ‘post box’ for children to post a letter to Santa. Make sure you get your letters in early, and you will receive a special reply from Santa!

• Madeline and Lil show how to send a Letter to Santa at the Macleay Island Post Office.

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