Monster Trails: The Christmas Spirits Safari

A happy piece of news. HDC very kindly offered Steyning one of the Monster Trails that they purchased - primarily to be used within Horsham Town but now one for us too. HDC are providing the setup of the trail (including a map); setup of all the systems and providing the vinyl ‘monster’ figures; promoting our trail on HDC & High Street Safari websites and running a national marketing campaign, plus sending a weekly report on the number of people using the trail.

Steyning & District Community Partnership Visitor & Tourism Committee were naturally delighted to accept the offer and have happily taken on the organising of this cheery, new community project for the run up to Christmas. The particular trail in question will run from December 3rd for 6 weeks and is called The Christmas Spirits Safari. Since the Lockdown news the original start date in November has needed to be changed – but let’s keep positive that this new date will remain in place.

The trail will take the form of solving a simply mystery involving the disappearance of Father Christmas’ brother – Albert Claus! His job is to maintain the Christmas Spirit and spread joy bubbles on Christmas day, but he’s gone missing! By visiting all the trail stops and speaking to each of the cheerful Spirits of Christmas, players will learn what has happened to Albert and, finally, be able to solve the mystery, save him and read a free Christmas Spirit eBook at the end.

It is free to play and creates a reason for families to get out of the house, walk the trails and take in the shops & other businesses on the High Street. Families simply tap or scan posters or any trail character decals that are on view in shop windows with a smartphone – once tapped the figures become interactive.

There are 10 ‘windows’ which have been spread through the High Street, making sure the participants take in all business premises. Once all 10 characters have been collected, the Christmas eBook will be unlocked. At the beginning of the Trail and within the system, there is an opportunity to donate to our charity, The Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice, but this is purely voluntary.

Hopefully, this fun adventure will attract both visitors to Steyning and residents, with parents being tempted to shop as well as bringing joy to the children. Within this article you will see two of the proposed posters/banners that will be used in the promotion. You will also spot the little guy, one of the 10 ‘Spirits of Christmas’ on the trail. This chap is called Koto and he’s the ‘Spirit of Christmas Song’.

Some happiness for all of us to look forward to – fingers being firmly crossed that all will run according to plan and bring some sparkle to our post-Lockdown days – maybe we just need to believe in Father Christmas and the joy bubbles! In the meanwhile, many thanks to the Economic Department at HDC for giving our town an opportunity to be involved in this wonderful piece of ‘Christmas’ spirit.

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