411 W. Arapaho
Every year my family watches as a village of colorful child-sized houses fills the plaza between the City Hall and library in the town of Richardson. This year, the tiny town of Santa’s Village celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary as Santa arrives at 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 6.
Surrounded by tidy white picket fences and illuminated by holiday lights, more than a dozen little buildings house Santa’s library (with readings from Dr. Seuss), the reindeer shed (with bags of reindeer food to help flying deer keep up their strength on Christmas Eve), Santa’s Beary Good Hospital (where kids can track how much they’ve grown) and more.
And of course, there’s Santa’s House and Workshop, where Mom and Dad can get pictures of their kids with Santa. Maybe even where Mom and Dad had their own pictures taken with the big guy once upon a time. Because after a quarter century, Santa’s Village is a family tradition.
After all these years, it’s still free, from 6-9 p.m. this Saturday and Sunday (December 6-7), and Friday-Sunday, December 12-14 and 19-21.
Over the years, the crowds have grown so much, with 25,000 expected each year, that the city is now offering special Thursday viewings just for Richardson residents. Take advantage of the “hometown Thursdays,” December 11 and 18 by bringing proof of city residency, such as a driver’s license or water bill to Richardson City Hall, Heights Recreation Center or Huffhines Recreation Center and get up to eight free tickets while supplies last.
Not a Richardson resident? Not to worry. Entry to Santa's Village is still free to all comers on weekends. Santa’s Village is untenanted during the day, but open for strollers and picture taking.
The line at Santa’s House for kids eager to present their gift lists lengthens fast. Local music and dance groups entertain, and strolling costumed characters happily pose for pictures while you wait. Parking around the City Hall complex also fills up quickly, so wear your walking shoes and prepare to hike a few blocks. The weather forecast this weekend looks good so far, but if foul skies threaten, check the Santa hotline at 972-744-4300 or www.cor.net for any possible closings.
This December marks the end of Totally Texas postings on this blog. The Wordcraft and Adventure classics posts will continue, but the family outings that were so frequent when my grandsons were small, the outings that were the stuff Totally Texas is made of, are growing less frequent now that the boys are in school full time and busy with music and athletics. To honor the nearly 40,000 readers who’ve viewed this blog I’ll count down your favorite posts on Mondays through this month. Including, of course, your all time favorites from Totally Texas!