A whole lot of kids got to see Santa's eyes twinkling up close on Friday night, courtesy of the Point Beach Chamber of Commerce.
A long line of children and parents waited patiently outside Ocean County Music and Electronics on Arnold Avenue for their turn to meet Santa and tell him what they want for Christmas.
"I want the keys to Daddy's car," said Dominic Silvestre, of Howell, despite that he's barely out of the toddler set. He visited Santa with his brother, Logan.
"Sorry, we can't do that," Santa replied, smiling, his dimples how merry.
Lorenzo Natoli, 3, asked for Transformers and said he had been a good boy all year long.
Volunteers with the Point Beach Chamber of Commerce shot and printed out photographs of Santa and the children to give to the parents.
Children also enjoyed a bouncy ride, karaoke singing, treats, candy canes to eat and elves to visit at In the Light Studio on Arnold Avenue, and clowns, Nancy and Dave DeVito, of Point Pleasant, making balloon hats and animals.
Santa's time with the children followed a tree lighting on Arnold and Bay avenues where Mayor Vincent Barrella wished everyone Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas and said that despite Superstorm Sandy, this is time for optimism and rebuilding.
The event was in front of Point Beach Interiors, 649 Arnold Ave., and also featured the Point Beach High School Band.
The Point Beach Chamber is also collecting donations for local families affected by Sandy. For more information, contact the chamber.
Other expected Santa sightings coming up in Point Beach, as publicized by the chamber, are as follows:
Dec. 8th - Lunch with Santa, Longboard Grill, 522 Bay Ave. 1-4 pm
Dec. 9th - Breakfast with Santa, Vicino De Mare, 502 Arnold Ave. 9 am-Noon
Dec. 16th - Breakfast with Santa, Corner Bagelry, 600 Arnold Ave. 10 am-1 pm
Dec. 22th - Lunch with Santa, 710 Arnold Ave. Noon-3 pm
There is also a bike raffle donated by CARA Realty.
Santa returns to Point Borough on Dec. 15 and 16. He will be, as he was last year, at the Bennett Cabin at Riverfront Park, at Maxson Avenue and River Road from 3 to 6 p.m. both days.
"Visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus and enjoy his trains, antique dolls and a display by Rudolph," says the Point Pleasant Borough Chamber of Commerce, which is sponsoring the event. High school band students will be playing.
Feel free to load your own photos of Santa and your children into this story.
To read "The Night Before Christmas,"by Clement Clarke Moore," click here.