Keep It Local – Supper with Santa

(I apologize for the lack of a post yesterday. I was away from my computer.)

Friday night, I had the opportunity to try something new in Evansville. I attended “Supper with Santa” at the Vanderburgh County Fairgrounds and was sponsored by the 4-H Club. What started off rocky ended up being a fantastic night for my family & myself.

Bonus points from Emily to Uncle David for choosing to celebrate his birthday, visiting Santa.

Bonus points from Emily to Uncle David for choosing to celebrate his birthday, visiting Santa.

The 4-H asked attendees to make reservations ahead of time, which we did. However, there were absolutely no open seats when we arrived, which told me one of two things: either the volunteers improperly planned or there were a ton of people who showed up without making reservations. My guess was the latter, based upon hearing several families say they didn’t even pay the $5 fee. (Shame on them!)  We wandered around for about fifteen minutes, waiting for someone to finish eating or a volunteer to bring out more seats. Neither happened, so we ended up sitting on the floor to dine. Upon seeing us and several other families dining on the floor, a volunteer finally rounded up an extra table and chairs from the back for us. Once we had seats, the night quickly improved.

Waiting patiently at the craft table

Waiting patiently at the craft tables

My five-year-old nephew was fascinated by the craft tables. Anyone who has ever tried to plan children’s crafts knows how difficult it can be to account for the various age ranges, but the 4-H Club did an exceptional job. The teenagers running the tables were so patient and willing to help him, while making sure the other children were included, too. There were two young men making balloon animals and sculptures that were extremely creative with their designs, which ranged from a dog to a complex shield to an intricate flower. They really took pride in their sculptures and it showed. We ended up taking home several balloons, a popsicle stick Santa, a crafty penguin named Jolly and a reindeer headband that used our hand prints as antlers.

The teens in charge of the table were so energetic and patient.

The teens in charge of the craft tables were so energetic and patient.

The teens went the extra mile for all of the children.

The teens went the extra mile for all of the children.

"Jolly the Penguin", as named by my nephew.

“Jolly the Penguin”, as named by my nephew.

Even the big kids had fun.

Even the big kids had fun, pretending to be an elephant.

Santa also made an appearance, which my nephew loved. My two-year-old niece, however, wanted no part of him. Still, we were able to get some good photos of her with the Christmas trees and 4-H students, whom she loved. We finished up the night, all smiles while touring the light display at the fairground.

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I cannot say enough positive things about the 4-H students that volunteered for this event. They were courteous, friendly, patient and simply a delight to watch in action. These teenagers were the highlight of the night for me. I only hope their parents and leaders knew how pleased we were. So many local events were cancelled because of the snowstorm and the 4-H leaders could have easily cancelled this one, as well. However, they rescheduled and pulled it off. For their efforts, they are all to be commended. Well done!

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