Thursday, November 25, 2010

Santa Claus Is Coming! (Say No to Doorbusters)

I wrote this last year, and it still applies, so I am reposting it. There are, however, a few changes for this year: Boonton's Christmas Parade & Opening of Santaland is on Small Business Saturday, 11/26 at 1 p.m. while in Denville, the Holiday Parade is Sunday, 11/27 at 2 p.m.  

Santa will be at Dash of Thyme Gourmet from 11 - 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, along with the Yuletide Carolers. 

While I am not sure if BMS is having their holiday boutique, Ward Vogt's Santaland cards are now available at both Heavenly Temptations, and Savannah Hope Vintage, on Main Street in Boonton. The Santaland carda, and Magic Keya for Santa will also be available at our Pop-Up Holiday shop on Saturday at 106 Broadway in Denville. We rented out 106 Broadway (the gallery/art studio) in Denville for a special shop with unique items, including the cards, keys and lots more fun and unique items. Join us from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free coffee and wine for shoppers, while supplies last. Contact me for details: 

Now, read last year's blog to get in the spirit this year! 

Santa Claus is coming to town. Maybe not your town, but he's coming to my (neighboring) town.

Barring a rain storm, Santa will be coming to town on none other than a fire truck this Saturday, as part of the Boonton Fire Department's 17th Annual Holiday Parade. The parade begins at 1 p.m. on Main Street and ends at Santa Land (intersection of North Main and Highland Avenue). Here, kids get to meet Santa, enjoy a petting zoo and pony rides, and drink some hot cocoa, all provided free of charge. Now, this isn't one of Santa's helpers dressing as Santa, like in the mall. This is the real deal, Holyfield. Santa Claus himself. 

I've loved Santa Land since I first saw it. It sits right on the Rockaway River, which is a peaceful setting in the middle of Boonton's Historic District. Trees are everywhere, and the Grace Lord park is right across the street. At Santa Land, they have a sleigh and reindeer, toy soldiers, and a real mailbox for kids to send letters to Santa, direct.

On left is a note card with a photo of Santa Land and the famed mailbox.

I loved taking my son there when he was younger, and watching as he carefully put his letter for Santa inside the white, red, and green painted box. Later, he'd look to me wide-eyed as if to be shocked that such a thing was possible. It's because of my love for the place that I asked Ward to do a photo card of Santa Land. The card (shown above) is now available at the Boonton Holiday Boutique on Main Street, so that kids can go get one, then write their letters to Santa on those cards. I like to keep my son's Santa letters and lists, so I have him write one letter to Santa to mail, and the other to leave with Santa's cookies on Christmas Eve. The one he leaves with the cookies is the one that I keep. (Now, where did I put those past year's letters...)

Cookies for Santa, and a key I made for him to get into the house.
This year, I am not sure if he's too old to go. I will ask, but won't be surprised if he decides to pass. I am going to try and milk it for as long as I can. Regardless, I will visit Santa Land anyhow once or twice, sometime during the day. I will sit in his sleigh, and remember when my little guy stood inside the giant wooden train set pretending to be a conductor. Or when at only three years old, he sat in the sleigh, calling proudly to the reindeer and getting the names all wrong. He laughed and laughed until he literally fell over.

My son, in the Santa Express train at Santa Land, 2004
This holiday season, I hope that you take the time to enjoy the spirit of Christmas. No doorbuster 3 a.m. sales or running like mad trying to get the last $50 iPod. Instead, take time to create lasting memories with your family. Cook and bake together, make decorations, sing Christmas carols, and go see Santa. All that will mean more in the long run than any cheap (or expensive) present ever could.


  1. Santa Land sounds fun! They grow up way too fast :( I like that you save the Santa letters, neat memory. I agree wholeheartedly with your last paragraph!!

  2. I love that last photo of your son, look how happy he is! You are so right let us not forget what this season is really all about.

  3. He's nine now. I feel like time is moving so quickly, and seeing that photo is like looking back lifetimes. I cannot believe how fast time flies. He is still a firm believer in magical ideas and Santa Claus, and I am thankful for that.

    Isn't that photo just so adorable? The world was so new to him.