Santa made his first appearance in the area, landing in Jefferson Friday night, to the delight of about 400 kids of all ages. With the flip of a switch, the tall pine trees next to the gazebo on the grounds of the township municipal complex and the Christmas tree set up inside the gazebo, were illuminated enough to guide Santa’s sleigh to the area.
The evening began with song and story. The Jefferson Township middle school choir, first the seventh- and eighth-graders, then the sixth-graders, led the crowd with holiday songs, including all the old classics. In between, the township Citizens of the year, Eileen Grady and John Focacci flipped a switch to turn on the Christmas lights, and township council president Richard Yokum invited any and all the little ones to join him inside the gazebo for a reading of the Christmas classic tale, ‘Twas the Night before Christmas.
Then it was time for Santa’s arrival. Yokum, with the help of Mayor Russell Felter, kept the crowd informed of Santa’s travel route over Connecticut, then south to Sussex County and finally his landing on the fields at the high school.
A quick ride from the high school, on the back of a flatbed float decked out in Christmas attire, Santa rolled through the municipal complex parking lot, arriving at the gazebo to cheers from the crowd. Like a rock star, he made his way down the path from the road to the gazebo, waving, high-fiving and hugging little and big kids alike. Once inside the gazebo he took a seat next to the Christmas tree and greeted every child attending the event with a smile, a hug and a candy cane.
“This might be our best year yet,” said Grace C. Rhinesmith, Director of Recreation of the amount of adults and children attending the event. “I don’t know if it’s the weather or if people just want to celebrate after going through a tough time with the hurricane. But this is a very good turnout.”
To finish off the night, light refreshments were served inside the lobby of the municipal building.
Santa will continue his visit in Jefferson beginning at 9 AM Saturday at Camp Jefferson, where he will be available for visits and photos all day until 3 PM. Jefferson is also hosting their annual Christmas in the Village, which is being held at venues through the township. A gingerbread house competition is on display at Milton United Methodist Church, Jefferson Township Museum’s, A Woodland Christmas Tour, including Mrs. Claus and costumed docents at the museum, and choir music and local bands performing at different venues throughout the northern section of town. For further information click onto the December 1 box on the calendar box below.