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Holiday Train stop in Hastings is Dec. 11

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Get ready for another holiday tradition.

The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train announced its 2012 schedule earlier this week, and Hastings is again one of the stops, this time at about 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, at the depot, 500 E. Second St.

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As in previous years, the stop offers entertainment and an opportunity to raise food and funds for the food shelf at Hastings Family Service.

This is the 13th year the Holiday Train has been raising food, money and awareness for food banks in communities across Canada and the United States.

In December 1999, Canadian Pacific began running a freight car decorated with thousands of Christmas lights across Canada to raise awareness of the issue of hunger. In 2001 the company launched a second Holiday Train in the United States.

At each stop, there is entertainment and a presentation of a corporate contribution to the local food shelf. The community is encouraged to donate food and funds, all of which stay in the community.

Entertainers on this year's United States Holiday train are Canadian country music artist Tracey Brown and the musical group, the Claytones.

Brown is a former member of the Family Brown and was nominated for a 1999 Juno Award for Best Country Female Artist.

She began performing when she was 10. During the Family Brown's 22-year-career, that group recorded 17 albums and hosted a syndicated television show.

She released her first solo CD in 1998. Three singles were released from that album. Brown completed work on her second solo studio album, Alone, which was released in 2008.

Over her career, Brown has released more than 20 albums. She is also a member of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.

She and her husband, Randall Prescott, have been actively involved in production of the Holiday Train since 2004.

The Claytones spin their melodic, vocal driven, Canadian brand of country music with old school sensibilities. A true collaborative project, Kelly, Adam and Anders write and arrange their songs together effectively making The Claytones sound the sum of its parts. The three full- time musicians have released eight full-length recordings of original music under the names of Kelly Prescott, Prescott, Anders Drerup, The Van Meters and Adam Puddington. The National Post listed them as one of the top five Canadian Acts to watch in 2012.

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