Breakfast with Santa at the Valparaiso Family YMCA is the perfect start to the holidays. Families gathered at the YMCA Saturday morning for breakfast while kids enjoyed in a variety of fun activities, beginning with crafts, games, and pictures with Santa. Mr. and Mrs. Claus greeted kids as the Nutcracker gave away Christmas gifts. There was nothing more joyful than seeing the smiles of children as they saw Santa for the first time!
For many families Breakfast with Santa has become a tradition. With over 130 people in attendance this year, the event has been bringing the holiday cheer to Valparaiso for the past 15 years. The Director of youth programs at the YMCA, Diane Sonnenberg, explained her favorite part about this event.
“It’s a wonderful community event for the families,” Sonnenberg described. “I think the enthusiasm you see when the families come through is my favorite part. It is a great family event.”
The Childcare administrative coordinator at the YMCA, Brandi Kneifel, explained why this event is fun but also good for the community.
“What I love is that a lot of kids might not get the opportunity to go somewhere else, so this is a fun and safe environment for them to go to but come together as a community,” Kneifel said. “We have a lot of these kids coming from our preschools that get to see each other in class, but now it is an opportunity for their families to meet and spend time together. It is really special to them.”
A local attendee and parent, Abra Douglas, described why she loves community events like these in Valparaiso and why they are special to her.
“To have so many things to do in Valpo that are family friendly is wonderful,” Douglas mentioned. “It is such a family-friendly city. We love coming to events like these with the kids! It’s fun watching their excitement with it all.”
The excitement of the kids is just the beginning. The YMCA offers a variety of other events throughout the year, with many opportunities for volunteering. As Kneifel described, many kids grow up at the YMCA and they give back too.
“We have kids that come into these events that go through our preschools and they turn around and volunteer or they get jobs here,” Kneifel explained. “They give back what they have gotten from it, so it is a great thing for the community and the kids.”
The YMCA and the Northwest Indiana Parrothead Club were to thank for hosting this amazing event. There was nothing more delightful for these families than experiencing this special holiday tradition with a wonderful breakfast and, of course, Santa. Breakfast with Santa was not only a jolly good time for everyone, but now it has become a tradition.
For more information on the Valparaiso Family YMCA, please visit http://www.valpoymca.org/
1201 Cumberland Crossing Drive Valparaiso, IN 46383
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