Get ready for MKO’s Santa in Manitoba’s North – Winnipeg! Santa will be making the rounds again this year.

MKO’s Santa will be making the rounds again this year in Manitoba’s north - Winnipeg

“Santa Express Program Brings Christmas Cheer to MKO First Nations”

Throughout northern Manitoba, the Santa Express program led by Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak Inc (MKO) continues to spread joy to remote communities with about 20,000 Christmas treat bags. The annual event, which runs for six days and takes Santa to 26 communities, has been a significant undertaking requiring months of planning. Nonetheless, the effort is all worthwhile when the children’s excited response to Santa arriving is seen.

Importance of the Santa Express Program

MKO Grand Chief Garrison Settee emphasized the importance of the Santa Express program, stating that the experience of Santa flying into their communities creates a unique excitement and adds to the Christmas season. Efforts by the MKO have also been made to ensure that children in remote communities receive something special during Christmas.

Community Involvement

At least 60 staff members contributed to packing the treat bags, and additional community members volunteered to help. Settee further explained that in the past, two or three Santas were needed to deliver the treat bags, but the operation has since been streamlined, with just one Santa now participating.

Traveling Arrangements

Contrary to the classic Santa narrative, Settee elaborated that Santa will not be traveling on a sleigh, but rather on a plane and a helicopter, choosing a more practical approach in covering the large distance between communities. There have even been occasions where a snow machine was used for transportation.

Final Plans

Santa’s travel schedule will start mid-December to coordinate with appointed community partners, concluding with the delivery of the treat bags. The MKO continues the effort to ensure that children in these regional communities do not miss out on the Christmas spirit. In addition, the organization remains dedicated to creating positive experiences for the youth.


The Santa Express program by MKO is a heartwarming initiative that showcases the power of community spirit and the effort put forth to bring joy to children in remote communities. It emphasizes the joy brought about by small acts of kindness and the importance of cherishing the Christmas season. The expressions of excitement on the children’s faces serve as a reminder of the significance of spreading the holiday spirit to every corner of the globe.”



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