CTV Lion's Children’s Christmas Telethon airs Dec. 5

The CTV Lion's Children’s Christmas Telethon will be on the air on Dec. 5, but as with many things, it will look different this year.

The CTV Lion's Children’s Christmas Telethon will be on the air on Dec. 5, but as with many things, it will look different this year.

Organizers spoke at All Nation's Church on Friday during rehearsals about the need in the Sudbury area, and about the new look for this year's telethon.

“Everything is virtual, and the virtual (event) is going to be broadcast Dec. 5 from 7-11 p.m., but the phones will be answered mostly by Lions members from three o’clock to eleven o’clock,” said organizer Sam Khoury.

Khoury said this year, there are more families in need than ever before.

“As of today, so far over 12,000 requests came in," he said. "The area we cover is a very huge area, from Thessalon, to Elliot Lake, Manitoulin Island, up to Onaping Falls, French River, Markstay-Warren.”

Michelle Tonner, managing producer of CTV News Northern Ontario, said the challenge of putting on a telethon during a pandemic are many.

“But we are being extremely cautious and extremely safe by, first of all, eliminating the live audience portion and eliminating having groups of kids … bring their donations, so that’s a big thing," Tonner said. "Also, keeping our staff safe is extremely important, as well, at CTV.”

All Nations Church has offered its building to host the telethon, and it's where all the performances will be pre-recorded. Kelley Pileggi, of All Nations Church, said they were happy to help.

“These are unprecedented times and it’s part of our mandate that we like to have outreach into the community," Pileggi said. "This is just another opportunity to do that, partnering with these amazing organizations, both MCTV and the Lions club, and continuing that support.”

Jeff Wiseman, telethon music director, said each performer gets an hour to record.

“So it’s going to take a little longer in the long run, but previous years, we would have had a few rehearsals, and then a dress rehearsal, and lots of times running through it but now it’s an hour,” Wiseman said.

Donations are currently being accepted for this year's telethon, with more details available on our website

Send us your pictures and videos

Because there is no in-person Cheer Pot this year, we are asking our audience to submit pictures or videos instead. 

Use landscape orientation and email to newsforthenorth@bellmedia.ca and put TELETHON in the subject line.

Make sure to include your name and community.

Then watch the CTV Lions Children's Christmas Telethon Dec. 5 from 7 - 11 p.m.

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