By TESA GLASS firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — MT. VERNON — Santa Claus is making two special stops in the city to spend time with youngsters young and old.
The Mt. Vernon Parks and Recreation Department will be hosting S’more Stories with Santa on Dec. 13 and Breakfast with Santa on Dec. 14.
S’more Stories with Santa started five years ago, and features hot chocolate and s’mores plus stories told by Santa.
“Santa gets to roam around the crowd and gets to spend some personal time with the children,” said George Bryant, parks and facilities director. “We don’t do the long lines and pictures, this is more relaxed and everyone gets to interact more.”
In addition, Mrs. Claus always accompanies the jolly old elf on his trip to the King City.
“Mrs. Claus always comes with Santa each time and is a big part of the program,” Bryant said.
An outdoor bonfire will be in Veterans Park at 6 p.m. on Dec. 13.
“Santa and Mrs. Claus will share some of their favorite Christmas stories with children as they gather around the warm fire,” said Wes Plummer, recreation coordinator.
Those attending are urged to dress warmly and bring a chair for the free family event.
The program will conclude at about 7:15 p.m. so the famous couple can return to their secret location in Mt. Vernon for an overnight stay and an appearance at Breakfast with Santa the following morning.
This will be the first year the Parks and Recreation Department is holding Breakfast With Santa, Bryant said.
“The Junior Women’s Club has always done the event and it has been successful,” Bryant said. “We have worked with them through the years on logistics. When they decided not to do it this year, we saw it as something we wanted to pick up and keep going.”
Santa will be getting up early Saturday morning and arriving at the Rolland W. Lewis Community Building at Veterans Park for the breakfast event.
Reservations are required for attendance and the cost is $5 for the first child and $3 for each additional child. Reservation times are 8 a.m., 8:30 a.m., 9 a.m. and 9:30 a.m.
Breakfast will be French toast, sausage, muffins, milk and juice. In addition to breakfast, each family will receive a 5 x 7 photo with Santa. TSS Photography will also have additional photos and Christmas cards available for purchase.
Reservations for Breakfast with Santa may be made by calling 242-6890 as soon as possible, as seating is limited.