BURTON — The Pizza with Santa event gives families from Burton and the surrounding areas the unique opportunity for parent-child connection because parents normally stay near their children for it, according to Sue Warren, director of Parks and Recreation and director of human resources and labor relations for the city of Burton.
Warren said Pizza with Santa also allows kids to socialize with peers their own age and to be creative.
In addition, for the first time this year, kids will also able to do Christmas shopping at the event, to be held from 12-3 p.m. at Bendle High School.
“The Santa Secret Store is a new offering of the event this year,” Warren said. “The Parks and Recreation Commission tried to add something new to the event to keep things fresh. We’ve also added a gift wrapping station.”
Gifts will be featured for all ages. Items will be priced at approximately $1-$5.
“Every child will be given $5 of play money to make purchases at Santa’s Secret Store when they come in the door,” Warren said. “Throughout the day, they will have the opportunity to earn more shopping dollars by cleaning up their workstations or assisting other people with activities or cleanup, for example.”
Warren said this teaches the kids responsibility for taking care of their own areas, sets the station for the next person behind them and lessens the workload for the adults.
Gift wrapping will be offered free of charge.
Cookie decorating will be able to be done with plain sugar cookies, frosting of various colors and sprinkles. Warren said cookie decorating will be fun because kids will be able to be messy and to express themselves.
Children will also be able to decorate clear Christmas bulbs with markers and various types of stickers. Warren said this allows children to contribute to their home’s Christmas decorating, and the bulbs can be hung on bedroom doors or by fireplaces in addition to being able to go on trees.
Stocking decorating is a favorite activity of the event.
“There will be different colors of glitter,” Warren said. “The kids will be able to decorate the stockings with the glitter any way they want, and they can put their names on them or decorate a stocking for a sibling.”
Warren said this activity also encourages artistic expression.
Young Pizza with Santa attendees can write letters to Santa at an activity station there.
“The kids address the envelopes to themselves to put in a special mailbox for Santa, and Santa has told us he will answer all the letters” Warren said.
A balloon twister will be available.
“He’s done dragons, swords, cats and princess tiaras,” Warren said. “It allows kids to fantasize about where they want to be and their favorite characters.”
Complimentary popcorn will be given away.
A 5X7 photo and four wallets with Santa will be available as a keepsake of the event.