Santa drops in on reindeer farm

11-24-17 Reindeer Farm Jump DSC_6062

By Steve Landon
Correspondent
Photos by Steve Landon

Everyone knows old Saint Nick loves to fly his Reindeer on Christmas Eve bringing gifts and joy to boys and girls around the world, so what does the Jolly old man do in the off season? – Skydiving of course! This past weekend Santa and one of his brave elves dropped in on the Rooftop Landing Reindeer Farm south of Clare.

Originally scheduled for Saturday the jump was postponed due to inclement weather. Not one to let kids down Santa checked with the National Weather Service and decided to make the jump Sunday. Rain moved out of the area late Saturday night leaving behind chilly temperatures, a small breeze, dark grey skies and a festive sprinkle of snow in its wake.

While waiting for Santa’s arrival visitors shopped for holiday gifts, got to know members of the Reindeer herd, enjoyed a cookie, a piping cup of hot cocoa, watched youngsters make unique works of art in the craft area. Some even took a Santa Jeep wagon ride around the farm where 15 Reindeer reside year round while others checked out animals in the indoor stalls at the gift shop.

Anticipation for Santa’s arrival began to build about 15 minutes before the big jump.  Children, parents and grandparents packing cameras and phones scurried to the edge of the landing zone with hopes of getting the perfect view of Santa and his Elf as they floated down from over 2,500 feet above the farm.   Just before noon the hum of a small plane engine was heard in the distance. Before long fingers were pointing skyward as the plane buzzed overhead with its precious passengers from the North Pole. In the blink of an eye two small figures emerged from the plane, deployed their brightly colored parachutes and gently floated to the ground for a smooth landing before several cheering fans.  Safely on the ground officials whisked Santa off in a UTV to stow his gear and freshen up a bit after an exciting jump. Moments later still wearing his goggles from the jump Santa headed out to greet wide-eyed youngsters and their families.

Entering the packed main hall to applause and cheers, Santa settled down in his chair to visit and take in countless Christmas wish lists.

While the weather was not exactly perfect, overall the event was a totally success with over 800 people coming to the farm for the jump and family activities.
Looking for something to do on Friday the day after Thanksgiving why not bring the whole family out to the farm they’ll be open from 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. If you can’t make it remember Santa will be at Rooftop Landing Reindeer Farm every weekend through December 23, when the farm will close for the season.

Hours are Saturday 10:00 a.m – 6:00 p.m. Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  The Farm is located on 2706 E. Stevenson Lake Road, Clare, for more information call 517-749-4866 or e-mail them at info@rooftopreindeer.com

 

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