Secret Santa: Community Edition # 2

Here’s number two in our River market Secret Santa series. (Number 1 is here.) 

For many, the focus from everyday life turns towards the spirit of giving during the holiday season. This year River Market invited ten citizens from New Westminster to shop for gifts on River Market’s dollar. Many would say these citizens are actively engaged in making this wonderful city better each day. These individuals were tasked to hand pick each item which they thought would make a great gift and their only parameter was that they had $50 to spend. Once they were done their shopping, they would wrap the gift and deliver it to an organization of their choice in New West.

Well known New Wester, Alan Wardle is currently President of the Hyack Association and photographer of the NWSS Varsity Football team. Has been a long time resident of New West with six kids.


From his kids’ activities, he got involved with many activities including Royal City Musical Theatre Society, Salmonbellies, and NWSS Hyack Football. Alan admits he has a hard time saying no and feels very passionate about children. “It’s very important to leave children with good memories of the city they grew up in,” he says. As they move away, he wants them to remember New West as a positive place.

Alan chose to shop for the Honour House Society because it has special meaning to him. “My family has had many friends and family who have served in the military and I feel a real connection to the people who Honour House hosts. It’s important to look after our soldiers after they serve. Honour House offers community members a fantastic chance to connect with those who serve in our military and emergency services.”


Alan focused his shopping at Bunches and Blooms, the floral shop at River Market. He purchased a gift card so Honour House can buy flowers for grieving families. River Market staff also note that Alan generously contributed an extra $100 to the gift and Robin Shafer, owner of Bunches and Blooms, contributed another $25 more when he heard that that the gift was for Honour House and what it was for.


If someone was shopping for Alan for a Secret Santa, he would wish for world peace, and a new suitcase—he and his wife are going to fulfill one of their retirement dreams and travel in Italy in the New Year.