Thanks to all who participated in the community Santa gathering with and without children and grandchildren to make this event a success. Although it began to rain, it didn’t dampen the spirit of the many who attended. It did help that it was held inside though. Residents were able to catch up with neighbors they knew and meet other neighbors they got to know. It was delightful watching the children light up when they were greeted by Santa. Many commented on how engaging, animated and jolly Santa was with the kids and the adults too. The kids were definitely in the moment posing with their huge smiles. The groups of siblings with matching and those with coordinating holiday outfits looked quite festive. There were fun family pictures with Santa including a family of eight attempting to pose with Santa while meeting the challenge of making sure they were all centered within the holiday photo backdrop. Residents were thrilled with this event as it brought the community together and others expressed their delight that it also enabled them to avoid a “kid and possible subsequent adult melt down” they would have faced at the mall while waiting in line for up to two hours to see Santa. Parents and grandparents didn’t have to wait long in line with their children and grandchildren and were able to get photos of happy faces that they can treasure for years to come.
Santa was quite clever answering some tough questions posed by a few inquisitive children. One question had to do with Santa’s agility and the use of the chimney. A child wanted to know if any of the other reindeer ever ask to guide his sleigh on Christmas Eve and a third question had to do with digestion. Santa was asked if he gets a stomachache from eating so many cookies and milk left out for him.
For those who are wondering, there were 197 Hershey Kisses® in the donated container of candy for the “Guess How Many” game. A young family on 123rd Pl E won with a guess of 190 which was the closest guess without going over.
To the many residents who have asked, we intend to repeat this event next year. Santa plans to visit River Plantation sooner next year as he is busy as it gets closer to the big day preparing for his journey across the globe on Christmas Eve. Now that there is proven resident interest for this particular event, we plan to increase community awareness and improve this event for next year.
Santa thanks the three boys in the community that volunteered to be his helpers handing out the treat bags to the children. Thanks to the 110 plus residents along with their family members who attended and of course, a big, huge, immeasurable sincere thanks to Santa who was relatable to the kids and the kids at heart. Without you, this event would not have been the success that it was!!!