Feelings in the general public remain divided over when is the best time to start bringing out Christmas decorations, but the retail holiday season got a big kick-off this past weekend at the Carrefour de L’Estrie with the arrival of Santa Claus on Saturday morning.
Though the main event was scheduled to take place at 10am, parents were lining up as early as the opening of the Mall at 7am for the chance to have their children visit with Santa Claus and share some of their holiday hopes and dreams with the big guy.
To keep the festive fans from feeling frustrated with their long wait, activities and animations for the children began as of 8:30 am. A range of costumed mascots patrolled the line as well as helpers handing out balloons and hot chocolate.
The man of the hour arrived, heralded by a marching band, at 10am and remained on site until shortly after 4pm, meeting with the children and handing out gifts. Organizers estimated that Santa saw close to 700 children over the course of the day.
Santa will be at the mall weekends between now and Christmas, and he is due for his annual visit to Lennoxville on December 13.