It’s safe to say that Crown Point is in full holiday mode after this past weekend, which featured a number of the city’s favorite seasonal traditions. From the Tree and Tank Lighting Ceremonies on Friday to the Winter Market on Saturday, the climax of the activity was definitely Santa’s arrival via helicopter and his parade to the historic Old Courthouse at the heart of the city.
The parade presented St. Nick touching down at Pointe Plaza in a Lake County Sheriff’s Department helicopter, where he then hopped on a fire engine that escorted him to the Old Courthouse. Crown Point is a community that loves to put on a show for its residents. Mayor David Uran frequently emphasizes the city motto, “Building a stronger community from within,” and sees traditions like the Santa Parade as part of the bedrock that Crown Point is built on.
“There’s no better place to celebrate our holidays than here in Crown Point,” said Uran, addressing a crowd gathered for the Tree Lighting Ceremony. “The winter season is the town’s best look, and it’s everyone coming out to events like this that make [the community] what it is.”
The Santa Parade, particularly the Man in Red’s arrival via helicopter, is such a spectacle that people come from both the city and its neighboring communities to enjoy the sight. For many of Crown Point’s families, the Santa Parade is an irreplaceable tradition.
“We’ve been coming out here with the boys for the last three years and we love it; it’s exciting to see Santa arrive in on a helicopter,” said Lynn Idalski, who attended with her family. “I really appreciate Crown Point. They do a lot of fun things, and it’s so helpful as someone with young kids to be able to go out to so many fun events, especially around the holidays. The boys have been looking forward to seeing Santa since we flipped the calendar to November.”
The Crown Point Fire Department and their firefighters escorted Santa and let kids take tours of their fire engines before the big man arrived. Stephen Gross, a firefighter and EMT with the department, is a regular at the parade; it’s one of his favorite parts of the year.
“Every chance we get to interact with the community is always a blast,” Gross said. “We’re really excited and we hope to get the word out about this even more, because the more the merrier! I mean, it’s Santa coming in on a helicopter, how much cooler could it get?”
When Santa arrived at the Courthouse, he settled in with Mrs. Claus to take photos with all the kids who came out to see him. Families also explored the city’s Winter Market, where local vendors and crafters showcased their wares, ranging from holiday collectibles and clothes to handmade jewelry, candles, and soaps. If you missed Santa this time, do not worry, he will be at the Courthouse every weekend until Christmas from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. for photos.
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