About joycekline

Hamper Party Head Elf

2017 Final Count was…155 Hampers

A smashing Success!

We filled a whopping 148 hampers last year, but this year–in a new venue and in record time–we filled 155!  In addition to our beautifully decorated hampers brimming with wholesome goodies, we were able to give the Salvation Army 11 bulging extra hampers of fresh fruit, veggies, stuffing mix and bread they can use in the hampers they make up.

2017 hamper party

Thanks to Our Venue Hosts

What would we have done if St. Mary the Virgin Anglican Church hadn’t taken us under their wing and hosted us? Their beautiful chapel was the perfect venue: lots of room, lovely high ceilings, stained glass windows–and pews to hold those big cases of food so we didn’t have to stoop to the floor!

Thanks for the music of the season

Thank you, too, to Canadian College of Performing Arts’ Alumni Carollers for starting the party off with gorgeous carols, to Michael Heaney who played piano for us for hours, and to our bagpiper Josh MacDonald who has piped us out to load the Salvation Army’s trucks since he was a teenager.

Thanks to the Many Individual Contributors

It is the collective generosity of our stalwart individual cash and food donors that keep the party going, but our tradition is to not reveal individual donor amounts since we know all our donors are giving what they can.

Thanks to Our Generous Business Donors

We really must thank our business donors, however, because without their unbelievable support we could never have accomplished what we did this year. Please support these community minded businesses:

And to the Elves…

Finally, huge thanks to amazing Organizing Elves Laura MacDonald, Dan Doherty, James VanDam, Paul MacDonald, Lisa Paquin, Val Sharp, Di Madill, and Josh MacDonald.  Laura, in particular, did weeks of behind the scenes organizing. Even in Santa’s workshop, thousands of dollars and thousands of pounds of food doesn’t get planned, budgeted, comparison shopped, ordered, promoted, coordinated, picked up and delivered, and properly recorded for tax purposes without a lot of Elf hours.  They are an amazing team!

Together we fed the hungry and those who otherwise may have lost hope.  Isn’t that the essence of the holiday spirit?

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah & Happy New Year!
Joyce & Elves Laura, Dan, James, Paul, Lisa, Val, Josh, and Di



We are sooo close!

The excitement builds! We have just over $6100 in cash donations and are fast approaching the $7000 we need to fill 140 hampers. With only two days left to shop we need to hear from those of you who haven’t already RSVP’d.

If you’ve already donated…thank you! If you have not yet RSVP’d, please let Joyce and the Elves know what what you’re bringing. The better we know what’s coming the more effectively we can allocate our precious funds.

This year’s party is going to be a real treat. Our gracious host St. Mary’s is a lovely venue. The Alumni Carollers will kick things off with seasonal carols, Michael Heaney will play piano from 2-4 pm and there will be light refreshments for all. And of course, as is our tradition, when the Salvation Army arrives at 4 pm bagpiper Josh MacDonald will pipe us out as we load up the trucks with bulging, lovingly decorated hampers.

Finally, congratulations to the Saanich Peninsula party for putting together the 60 hampers they donated to the Salvation Army, Sidney Lions’ Food Bank and Tseycum First Nation. Awesome job!

We can’t wait to see you all Sunday.
Organizing Elves Laura, Joyce, James, Dan & Val

Saanich Peninsula party donates 60 hampers+! Here’s their 2017 party report:

Well we feel like the holiday has officially begun! Our garage is now empty (aside from a huge stack of empty produce boxes), but our heart are full, as are the Sidney Lion’s Food Bank, Salvation Army, and Tseycum First Nation’s trucks! 

The Salvation Army is preparing for a record year with over 3000 families expected to request hampers! The Sidney Lion’s Food Bank has received 458 requests for hampers, in addition to the 1100-1200 people they serve each month! 
Thanks to each and everyone of you, 60 families will be enjoying a hearty, healthy, and delicious meal this holiday. But almost just as important, these families will get the sense a your care and compassion through all of the special touches in this year’s hampers. From handmade cards by Lisa (and signed by all of you), to homemade cookies and beautiful swags. These thoughtful additions are what really makes the hampers more than a meal, but a special gift. And as Pat and his crew from the Salvation Army told us, these special touches really do get noticed. In fact, they hand deliver our hampers so as not to make anyone jealous 🙂
We are so thankful to be surrounded by such an incredible community. You are what makes this initiative such a success. We just love how everyone continues to come up with new ideas and opportunities. In addition to all of your personal support, we had a few businesses chip in:
– Thanks to David for approaching Save-On Esquimalt who donated five $25 gift cards  
– Amber secured an amazing deal on turkeys from Save-On in Sidney
– Michell’s farm donated a huge box of cabbage and carrots, thanks to Robert and Barb 
– Fickle Fig donated bread for the hampers and cookies for the helpers
– Woodwynn farms gave us a great deal on their eggs
And a HUGE thanks to Jason & Candace who not only set up the online form, but also did the HUGE shop (thanks to your donations of nearly $1800!), and repacked all of the bulk produce. Really I would love to thank you all individually, as this really doesn’t happen without you. And it was so great to see all of the kids involved this year!
Not only have you filled our hearts with gratitude, and helped us to pass on the importance of caring for our community to the next generation, but you have really reminded us of how fortunate we all are to have a happy and healthy family, a warm home to share with you all, and full bellies at the end of the day. 
We truly hope that your holiday is filled with the company of loved ones and special moments together, meals shared, and peace in your hearts. 
With love, 
Patrica, Aaron & Emma

It was a close call but now the excitement builds!

We were a little last minute getting out party invitations this year because we almost didn’t have a venue till St. Mary’s Church generously offered to host us in their space. The Canadian College of Performing Arts, which had hosted the party for the last few years, renovated their space and changed their scheduling which sent the Head Hamper Elves scurrying into frantic last minute action to find a new venue large enough to accommodate us.  Luckily, St. Mary’s is right next door to CCPA so party regulars will have no trouble finding us on party day!

New to our beloved holiday event and want to know what all the glorious fuss is about? Check out my November post for info on what to contribute to join in the fun.

Can’t wait to see you Sunday, December 17th!

Joyce and Hamper Elves Laura, Dan, James, Paul, and Val


Hamper Party Dec 17, 2017 – Save the Date

Mark your calendar. It’s Victoria’s 17th annual…Christmas Hamper party!

Sunday, December 17, 2017     1-4 pm

Location: St Mary’s Church, 1701 Elgin Rd, Victoria BC V8R 5L7

Oh baby, one of Victoria’s best holiday events is almost here!

Christmas Hamper Party, December 2011. Photo by Gary McKinstry

Photo by Gary McKinstry

New to the party? Returning elf?

Since 2001, our annual Christmas Hamper Party has lovingly created over 1550 fresh food hampers for the Salvation Army to donate to local families in need. Last year we filled 148 hamper to the brim with a frozen turkey, fresh fruit and veggies, holiday treats and all the fixings needed for a festive holiday feast. This year we want match our record of 158 hampers!

Come join us for a fun afternoon of holiday carols, generous community, light refreshments, and the true spirit of the season as we collectively pack our hampers with the beautiful food that our family, friends and supporters have collected. Let’s share our good fortune by feeding as many hungry families as we can! As is our tradition the bulging baskets will be ceremoniously loaded onto the Salvation Army trucks accompanied by live bagpipe music to fill your heart with the Christmas spirit.

Details about what and how to contribute to this year’s party.

There’s lots of info on this site to inspire you and show you what a great event a hamper party can be. Interested in hosting your own hamper event?

We look forward to seeing you at the party.

Joyce Kline and the Hamper Elves.

What people are saying about the Victoria party…

  • What a wonderful party – and an amazing result. Both Lily and I had a grand time yesterday!We know how beneficial the gift of a hamper can be to so many people at this time of year. But your gift to the party-goers and hamper-makers is immense as well. You made it so easy, so gratifying, and so fun for all of us to act generously. Thankyou for that incalculable offering. Merry Christmas, Jean Macgregor

  • I am so pleased to have been a part of the Hamper Party although I was not there in person, I was in spirit.  What a wonderful thing to do for our fellow earth citizens.  It is the thing to do  . . .  to look after those who are not as fortunate as we and to let them know that some of us care. Many thanks for including us and Morning Fresh, Marnie Crowe and Lawrence Eastick
  • I am contacting you on behalf of Bernice Carter and the Victoria Chapter of the CCA to express our gratitude for your donation of gluten free products and gift certificates to our inaugural Gluten-Free Christmas Hamper initiative. hard-working volunteers created no less than 21 hampers containing your donations, apples, oranges, vegetables, milk, turkeys and more. I had the privilege of delivering the hamper pictured to a woman in need and received the heartwarming email of thanks below. The very best to you this season! Ellen Bayens
    • Thank you and your members for a very unexpected .. delightful surprise!  How very kind and generous of you and the members of the Victoria Chapter to think of me, especially when we’ve only met on two short occasions.  I’ve been very blessed.  With the bounty I received I shared it with my neighbour below me, as he has so little … when it comes to food.  He thanks you so much as well.  In fact he was as surprised as I was.  A loss for words … we both suffered from that last night.  That was a sweet a loving gesture – I thank you from the bottom of my heart. M E R R Y   C H R I S T M A S to all Santa’s Helpers . Best Wishes and Happy Holidays”