SPRINGFIELD TWP. Santa continues his pre-Christmas rounds to check on boys and girls of all ages to see if they have been naughty or nice.

On the evening of Dec. 6, the jolly man was spotted in Springfield Township. A large crowd of all ages was waiting by the gazebo on the lakefront for Santa to arrive do his magic and light the township Christmas display.

With eyes to the sky watching for the sleigh, the crowd suddenly saw flashes of light. The lights became closer and brighter when the crowd suddenly saw three police cars approaching with lights, sirens and a large red fire truck following. It was then that a little one shouted,

“There is Santa on the fire truck.”

The red suited jolly man was waving and shouting Ho, Ho, Ho as he got closer to the crowd. With the lack of snow on the ground to land his sleigh, Santa had to find another mode of transportation to get to the township to light the Christmas display.

During the event, the High School Spartanaires, under the direction of Rebecca Sabree, performed Christmas songs standing in the large sleigh lakeside. The elementary children from Young and Spring Hill Schools joined the Spartanaires with some of their favorites like “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer” and “Frosty the Snowman.”

Zoning Investigator and township Project Manager Terry Robinson welcomed the crowd and thanked those that had helped to make the brightly lighted display possible.

Once Santa did his magic and waved his hands to light the brightly colored display, he made his way to the Fire Department to visit with the children. One by one, he heard their wishes for under the Christmas tree.

Santa said he has found that most children have been nice and only a few have been on the naughty list, but they are working to make amends before the big day rolls around.

The lighting has been a tradition in the township for many years. Hot dogs, hot cocoa and cookies were served as the Spartanaires sang familiar holiday songs.

“The event exceeded our expectations in attendance, and it was great to see the excitement on the children’s faces when Santa arrived,” Robinson said. “It was at that moment I knew all the work that went into the event was well worth it.”

The display is provided through donations of residents, businesses and organizations of the township.

For those wanting to see the display, they will find it just off Route 224 (Waterloo Road) on Canfield Road behind Springfield Town Hall. A unique aspect of the display is that people can walk through the light display from the Spartan Trail.

Robinson thanked everyone that helped to make the event a tremendous success, the local business for their generosity and all the parents that bring their children out to share the joy of the event. He thanked Uncle Tito’s, Stacked Akron, Tim Horton’s, Act Now Printing, Parks Employees Dan Gravila, Keith Fox, Jerry and Cindy Michael, the Police and Fire Departments and Auxiliary, Spartanaires, Young and Spring Hill Elementary students, Dustin Boswell and the High School IT Dept.

It was a great evening for everyone, and Santa was able to hear the wishes of all of the children before he received a call from the head elf that there was a problem at the North Pole and he must return at once. He was sorry he had to go and said for the children not to forget the cookies and milk and the reindeer food on Christmas Eve. He and the reindeer appreciate the snacks for their long journey. As he walked away, the crowd heard a big Ho, Ho, Ho and the jolly man was gone.

To donate to the lights on the lake, call 330-734-4121, stop by Town Hall or email Robinson at trobinson@springfieldtownship.us.