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Scheduled Events News

This Christmas, families in Runcorn and Widnes will be able to track down ten cute Christmas animals in AR thanks to Halton Borough Council.

The trail runs in Runcorn and Widnes from Tuesday 14 December until Friday 31 Decemnber and if you complete it you could win a Nintendo Switch

Funded by the European Regional Development Fund, the Welcome Back Fund, Halton Borough Council has teamed up with trail experts High Street Safari to run a free ‘augmented reality’ trail in Runcorn and Widnes.

The trail is completely contactless thanks to its cutting edge QR code, web-based platform, and they say that anyone with a smartphone can take part.

The use of augmented reality means players can not only discover the characters in participating businesses windows, but they actually get to see them burst to life right in front of them.

Halton Borough Council’s Executive Board Member for Culture, Cllr Paul Nolan, said: “The idea is to encourage families to come into the centre with a safe, socially distanced and ambitious event.

“The trail is a story driven experience that players can complete in any order and, while being engaging and fun, is designed to encourage people to get out, do some walking, and discover hidden parts of Runcorn and Widnes.

“The β€˜Santa Needs You!’ AR Trail is positioned around the Runcorn and Widnes town centres with ten cute Christmas animals to find.”

Rudolph has taken the year off and opened his spot on the sleigh team to whole of the animal kingdom, players are tasked with visiting each of the hopefuls and helping Santa decide by voting at the end.

The ten creatures on the trail have been specially commissioned for the trail and have been modelled in 3D for augmented reality, β€˜PokΓ©mon Go’ style. Once players open the AR they can take selfies or even record movies with the animals.

The trail takes about forty-five minutes to complete but can be completed in more than one visit. It’s completely free for families and groups to take part in and they win an e-book at the end that concludes the story.

The trail works by utilising contactless QR codes, without the need for families to download or sign up to anything.

With safety in mind, it has been designed so that there is no need to go inside the venues, but some participating businesses are offering extra incentives to come in while you visit.

It’s been designed so that younger children will enjoy spotting the cute animals in host windows and older kids, and grown-up ones, will be able to engage by reading the stories and taking hilarious selfies.

To find out more, please visit the website: www.santaneedsyoutrail.com