The Potlatch building at the Nevada County Fairgrounds was overflowing with local families this morning during the Breakfast with Santa event put on by the Prescott-Nevada County Chamber of Commerce. Numerous residents turned up to enjoy the festive Christmas atmosphere that provided food, games, craft stations, presents, and a visit with the big guy himself. Whether they were not-yet walking or on the cusp of pre-teen years, youth of all ages appeared to enjoy this celebration with their favorite holiday hero: Santa Claus. His plus-one for the occasion garnered quite a bit of interest, too; Mrs. Claus was on the scene as well, spreading a bit more of that holiday magic.
Chamber Director Jamie Hillery shared with SWARK.Today why the chamber holds this annual event. “We do it to give the kids in community a chance to come out and take pictures with Santa, get toys, and have a community Christmas event together,” Hillery said. “Everything is free and they can have breakfast, make jingle bell necklaces, decorate cookies, play bingo to win toys, write letters to Santa, and more. Each kid gets a box with gloves, a toothbrush, toothpaste, toys, candy, and other little items to take home as gifts.” Hillery said that, in the past, so many kids were in attendance that they would run out of toys before the event was over, but this year, in addition to the donation made by Swamp Riders after their toy drive, local businesses donated, as well, so they had plenty of toys to last the entire event.
The sound of gleeful chatter accompanied Christmas music as the children moved around the building, taking turns at the various stations full of merry-making activities. SWARK.Today was able to get feedback from a few of the kiddos regarding their highlights of the day.
Lorraine and Ruel McKelvy said they were having a great time. Ruel said the best part of the day was “seeing Santa” and that he had fun playing the “snowman game.” When asked which activity she enjoyed the most, Lorraine said “cookie-decorating.”
Jakylan Todd said he also enjoyed decorating cookies. At that point in the morning he had not yet had his visit with Santa, but he said he was really looking forward to his turn.
Little Aliza Thompson said her favorite part of the day was “making stuff” as she proudly displayed her jingle bell necklace she crafted earlier that morning. When asked what she requested of Santa for Christmas, she cheerfully told the SWARK.Today reporter that she asked for “a barbie house for $100!”
The Yuletide celebration remained full of activity and joy right up until the end of the event. Some kids were having such a good time playing games and just enjoying the presence of Santa that they didn’t want to leave. But more than one parent could be heard on the way out of the building reassuring the enthusiastic kiddos that Santa would definitely be back for Christmas … as long as they stayed on the Nice List.