After a two-year hiatus, the popular San Carols returned this year. The iconic event has been held annually for more than 70 years and is the upper north shore’s largest community carols event.
On Sunday, December 11, thousands from the local area gathered with friends and family on the Village Green, the Sydney Adventist Hospital’s large front lawn area.
CEO Brett Goods welcomed guests, saying that the evening is a very special event on the San’s annual calendar.
“We are delighted to be holding San Carols again after having to cancel the event due to COVID,” he said. “It’s a much-loved community gathering amongst the Adventist Church community as well as the entire upper north shore of Sydney. It’s great to see so many families and friends here tonight for this wonderful occasion.”
The event kicked off with a variety of family activities followed by the very popular children’s concert featuring the Bluey and Bingo Live Christmas Experience. The main carols program was co-hosted by Australian actors and performers Ian Stenlake and Penny McNamee. Mr Stenlake has performed at San Carols several times in the past.
“To me it’s one of the best carols in the country to be part of,” he said. “It’s got so much heart. The overall feeling that you get when you’re there amongst that group of people is fantastic. It has a huge family aspect to it, and there is something for everyone in it.
“The San Carols band is brilliant, and it was great to perform with some of the other musicians—some for the first time.”
Ms McNamee said she has fond memories of the San. “Both my babies were born at the San, and it was a wonderful experience,” she said. “So I feel pretty attached to the hospital. I grew up in in the area, as did my husband, so I was excited to be back there performing with so many of our friends and family in attendance.”
Other performers included husband and wife duo Jess and Matt, Jana Lombart, the Wahroonga Adventist School Choir, and Dave Martin and the Carols band.