This Valentine’s Day brings with it a new way to celebrate love in Victoria, recently named Canada’s most romantic city for the fourth year in a row by Amazon. Love locks, a tradition believed to date back as far as ancient China, have been padlocked onto chains, gates and bridges around the world by couples who want to lock their love forever and throw away the key.
Uptown is now home to the only love locks sculpture in Greater Victoria. The seven foot-high heart has been permanently installed at the shopping centre’s park on Oak Street.
“Love is big at Uptown and we wanted to find a way to celebrate not only romance but all kinds of love in all kinds of relationships from best friends to couples and families,” said Kristy Lowes, marketing director, Uptown. “We thought this tradition would be something fun and special that our guests can enjoy and we’re excited to have a permanent display of love here at Uptown.”
To celebrate the new installation, Uptown is using the sculpture to raise awareness and funds for the United Way’s Raise-the-Red campaign during the month of February. Bright, red padlocks are available from Uptown’s guest services for $12, all proceeds will be donated to the United Way.
“Many people write their names or a special sentiment on their love locks and we thought it would add something special to also provide people with an opportunity to give to an important local cause with their lock purchase,” said Lowes.
The centre will also be giving away a prize package including a $500 Uptown gift card and two-night stay at Magnolia Hotel and Spa. People may enter until February 29, 2016 via Instagram or Facebook using the hashtag #lovelocksuptown with a story of the craziest thing they’ve done for love.
“We’re already hearing some sweet love stories and expect there will be many more to come,” said Lowes.
Uptown will be home to the Raise the Red ‘love’ car on Sunday, February 14, 2016. Those who find the car may take a selfie with it and share using hashtag #raisethered to be entered for a getaway prize package.