A visit from Santa Claus, some hot cider and homemade cookies, plus the Christmas carols sung by the choir, all made for a festive evening hosted Friday, Dec. 16 at the Farmington firehouse.
Situated at the corner of Highway 4 and Escalon-Bellota Road, the firehouse has served as a stopping off point for Santa for several years, taking time to help bring holiday wishes to the community.
Festivities on Friday started with members of the Farmington United Methodist Church choir offering up some carols and traditional Christmas songs, encouraging the crowd to join in on the ones they knew.
The sing-a-long began at 6:30 p.m. and attendees also had the chance to visit with friends and neighbors and enjoy refreshments – from hot chocolate to coffee, hot cider to homemade cookies and other sweet treats – before the fire horn sounded around 7 p.m. to announce the arrival of the honored guest.
Children and their parents clambered for position outside the firehouse, as the fire truck bearing Santa Claus rolled up to the scene. Once out of the truck, Santa was greeted by youngsters and then made his way inside, where he visited with each child that wanted to share their holiday wish lists. A small gift and candy cane were provided for each child that wanted them as well.
“We ended up with 87 kids,” said Farmington Fire Chief Conni Bailey. “Not everyone that came wanted a present, either; those that did were very appreciative.”
Parents could take photos of their children with Santa, though there were a couple of kids too young and scared of Santa to sit still for a picture.
Overall, Bailey said the evening was a success, though it is a major undertaking, including a marathon of baking for a couple of days prior to putting on the cookie spread.
Several community groups help provide the presents and candy canes and Bailey said it is a festive way for the small community to usher in the holiday spirit.