The City of Coquitlam produces the Lights at Lafarge, at Lafarge Lake, a Christmas light display that wraps around the lake. Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada, is a suburb of Vancouver, BC. The Lights at Lafarge Lake is free for the public and super popular.
Also, in conjunction with Lights at Lafarge, the Coquitlam Centre, less than two kilometers from Lafarge Lake, produces Lights at Lafarge and hosts other Christmas season events and activities. During this busy season, the City of Coquitlam advises people to take the Lafarge/Lake Douglas SkyTrain.
The Lafarge Lake/Douglas SkyTrain station drops visitors off right at Lafarge Lake and its route runs right by the Coquitlam Centre. Or, visitors can take the bus and use the TransLink’s Trip Planner. On-site parking is limited. The busiest times at Lights of Lafarge are between 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
The Lights of Lafarge opens with a kick-off event on November 24, 2023, and runs through the end of February 2024. The lit, flat, and mostly paved pathways wind around the lake for 1.2 km and are accessible by strollers and mobility devices, except for one section of packed gravel. Bathrooms are at the Pinetree Way side of the Lafarge Lake trail loop and near Parking Lot D next to the tennis courts.
Town Centre Park Community Plaza
The Town Centre Park Community Plaza sits on the northeastern shore of Lafarge Lake, and is hosting Park Spark Light Brigade activities every Friday through Sunday during Lights at Lafarge. The activities include carnival, caroling, dog-walking, fairy tale, pirate, snow-themed nights, and more leading up to Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
The Town Centre Park Community Plaza host events and activities year-round, so keep that in mind if you do not live in Coquitlam, but want to visit from other areas of Metro Vancouver any time. A short trip away at the Coquitlam Centre, other events during the Lights at Lafarge tours can be combined for a complete day and evening full of winter wonderland fun.
The Town Centre Community Plaza is open every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Lafarge Lake lights up at 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily. It is less crowded before 6 p.m. and after 8 p.m.
The Coquitlam Centre December Events
Holiday Selfie Stations
The Holiday Selfie Stations at Coquitlam Centre begin November 17, 2023, and run through December 27. Five Christmas-themed selfie stations are scattered around the centre, at Level 1 Centre Court, Level 1 by Hudson’s Bay, Level 2 by the Food Court, Level 2 by Miniso and Scotiabank, and Level 2 by H&M.
Santa’s Photo Studio
Santa’s Photo Studio is open from November 27 to December 24th. Take photos with Santa on Level 2 by Best Buy. You must make a reservation and book by appointment only. Due to popularity, Santa’s Photo Studio asks for the following considerations:
- Each 15-minute time slot is made up of four separate bookings (four separate, individual families of 2 to 6 people will be photographed in every 15-minute session).
- Each booking will last 2 to 4 minutes to ensure that all four bookings can be accommodated within the designated 15-minute time slot.
- If you would like more than two poses (i.e. a photo of children, a photo of children with parents, and a photo of children with grandparents), please make an additional booking, we are unable to accommodate more than one or two poses per booking.
- Families will be photographed on a first-come, first-serve basis during their 15-minute time slot.
- Please arrive on time for your time slot as we will not be able to accommodate families who arrive any later than 5 minutes before their 15-minute time slot ends.
- Your booking includes a digital download of all of the photos taken of your family during your visit.
Holiday Charity Gift Wrapping
Shoppers can support SHARE Family & Community Services by using its gift wrap services for a fee. All proceeds will go to support Holiday programs at SHARE. This gift wrap service begins November 27 and runs to December 24, 2023. SHARE’s gift wrap booth is on Level 2 by H&M and Walmart.
Retail Pop-Up Events
Select vendors in Coquitlam Centre are featuring pop-up booths throughout the Christmas season beginning November 9, 2023. Each vendor will run a booth or exhibit for three days from November 4 to December 24. Look for heavy traffic near the Pop-ups.
Lafarge is a small urban lake covering 4.2 hectares. Anglers like to fish for brown bullhead, common carp, pumpkinseed, and rainbow trout in Town Centre Park. This park began as a gravel quarry until 1989, when it transformed into the manmade Lafarge Lake and Town Centre Recreation Complex.
This urban park was the newest and finest facility of its kind on the lower mainland and designed to host several types of sports events. Today, the complex serves residents of Coquitlam and visitors with a variety of sports, outdoor recreational pursuits, passive and social areas, and cultural experiences.
The City of Coquitlam
Coquitlam was the name of a First Nation tribe, from French: Premières Nations. First Nation Indigenous Peoples are Canadian Nations that are not of Inuit or Métis descent. Today, this Nation is officially the Kwikwetlem First Nation of the Stó:lō people or “People of the River”.
The Kwikwetlem are a Sto:lo people living in the Coquitlam area of British Columbia, Canada. The First Nation operates an office in Coquitlam, BC. The Sto:lo are part of a larger First Nations group, the Coast Salish Peoples of the Pacific Northwest. Coquitlam is derived from Kwikwetlem and means “small red salmon”.
This name refers to a species of salmon that once travelled up the Coquitlam River to spawn in Coquitlam Lake. Coquitlam was incorporated as a district municipality in 1891. The Ross, McLaren Mill, and later Fraser Mills, was the newest and most innovatively advanced mill of its time, and was established in Coquitlam in 1889.
In 1909, French Canadians who worked in the Quebec lumber industry migrated to the now historic Maillardville community within the City of Coquitlam. Maillardville was the largest Francophone centre west of Manitoba, and the seed for the future growth of Coquitlam.