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Santas rounds extended one more night due to wind last week
ARLINGTON Santa Claus will be out one more night on his 10-day tour of Arlington with the Arlington Fire Department, extending an extra night to replace last weeks cancellation due to the windstorm.
Santa and his team of seven helpers will be in eastern Gleneagle, Wednesday, Dec. 20, from 7 9 p.m.
For the past 10 days, a city fire truck dressed up to the hilt has spent two hours each evening touring town. Topped with lighted reindeer, a snowman and a Christmas tree, the fire truck flashed white lights, Christmas music and sirens that screamed their arrival into the chilly night air as they escorted Santa from neighborhood to neighborhood. Upon arrival in the neighborhood, Santa climbed out of the aid car and walked from door to door, greeting residents of the city, handing out candy canes and posing for pictures.
Fire Department Captain Dave Kraski said that they gave away most of 5,000 candy canes the same as last year not counting some breakage.
Last year Haggen sold them to us at cost and this year they gave us a real deal and sold them to us at half their cost, Kraski said.
The citys fire department has been ushering Santa around town for 10 years, and for all that time has covered the cost of the project, which involves a team of at least eight volunteers every night.
This is the first year we have sought cash donations, Kraski said the Arlington Rotary Club gave $250 for two new multi-sized Santa suits.
We need to have extras in case one gets soaked in the rain.
Santas caravan includes two aid cars and the decorated fire truck, at a minimum. The first aid car in front is in charge of clearing the roads and attracting people with a siren, and the aid car in back is where Santa rides. The team includes three drivers and Santas elves who help distribute candy canes and collect food for the food bank. They are largely fire department staff with some spouses, children, friends and other volunteers.
Sometimes on-duty staff join in the procession, too, so it varies some, Kraski said.
The citys IT tech guy, Bryan Terry created a collection of music on iPod this year and we added some new decorations, too, Kraski said.
Kraski said its only been in the past few years that Santas fire department-assisted tour of Arlington has not been able to go down every street in town.
Since we started going to Smokey Point, Kraski said.
We just cant go down every street anymore.
Kraski is also pleased to report that food collection for the food bank has been very successful, as usual.
The teams have a key to the food bank and just take it all over there after each run, or maybe wait til morning.
At the food bank, Bill Robison said it truly is amazing.
They just keep bringing it in every night.
Robison said that the Christmas baskets have been distributed and now everything that comes in will be saved for after Christmas.