Little hands clung onto hot chocolate and tiny voice sang in unison "Santa Clause is Coming to Town" as children anticipated the arrival of of their favorite bearded man.
Shortly after Santa's arrival at Green's Christmas at Town Park event, fireworks blazed through the sky and Christmas, with all of its wintry excitement, sprang with each colorful sparkle.
"We come here every year, it's always a fun event," said Michael Mims, who lives in the Green area. Mims attended with his younger son Jaxon, and his mother Mattie Mims. They're favorite event includes meeting Santa.
As snow blanketed everything outside, many escaped the cold by attending events inside the central administration building. Kids huddled around tables to make crafts and goodie bags, while others attended story time.
"She absolutely loved making her goodie bag, and now we're just waiting for Santa" said Cat Hoover about her daughter Jocelyn. Holding her goodie bag, Jocelyn sported an adorable smile.
Many sang along to their favorite Christmas tunes as they waited for Santa outside. Suddenly stopping mid-song as many saw the Green fire truck make its way to the crowd, many children's singing turned to squealing as Santa waved at them through the truck. Sprinting through a group of people, one little girl jumped into Santas arms the second Santa left the fire truck. As they embraced, kids formed a small crowd around Santa, as they chanted his name.
"Merry Christmas Santa!" said one little boy as he let go of a long embrace with Santa.
With children trailing behind him, Santa, his helper, and the Grinch, made their way to the stage where Mayor Dick Norton flipped a switch, revealing beautiful holiday decorations including a huge "Seasons Greeting" sign in front of the building.
Everyone participated in the three-second countdown to an extravagant fireworks show that lit up the night sky. As the fireworks made their way up, many watched in awe as colors exploded in front of them. Little boys and girls, strung on to the shoulders of fathers, gazed with astonishment.
After the fireworks show, all followed Santa for pictures, and each child requested what they wanted for Christmas, wrapping the event to a close.
RUN, RUN RUDOLPH
Kicking-off the Christmas at Town Park event is the annual half mile Rudolph Run which is held at the Green High School track. Many, such as Tim Poirier who dressed up as the Grinch, wore Christmas-themed costumes during the run for a chance to win one of many Target Gift Cards available.
Also dressed up was Elissa Wood who wore wrapping paper as her costume. As her name was announced along with her daughter, Deanna Wood, many laughed as they heard the wrapping paper scrunch as she walked towards the announcer to claim her prize of Most Creative Costume.
Page 2 of 2 - Aside from winning awards for their costumes, some won awards for getting first place during the Rudolph Run.
"He was really excited about winning" Judy Ninni said of her son Jackson Ninni. Jackson received first place in the 8 to 11 age group. Judy Ninni's other son, Eddie Ninni, also won first place in the 7 and under age group.