Here comes Santa Claus

Savannah Vasquez
A special pet night is planned at Pier Park in Panama City Beach. [CONTRIBUTED PHOTO]

Jolly old Saint Nicholas has come to town, and he and his helpers are ready to hear the wishes of children young and old. If you want to take your little ones to meet Santa, snap a photo, or just feel some Christmas cheer, here are some places to see Santa.

Santa Rosa Mall: Santa will be at the Santa Rosa Mall in Mary Esther every day through Christmas Eve. Visit Santa at the enchanted ice castle in the mall lobby and purchase holiday photo packages if you want. Santa’s hours are Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sunday noon-6 p.m. Santa Rosa Mall is at 300 Mary Esther Blvd.

Bass Pro Shop: Visit Santa and receive a complimentary photo and digital Christmas card at Bass Pro Shop in Destin. Santa will appear through Dec. 24 weekdays 5-8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sunday noon-5 p.m. Bass Pro Shop is at Destin Commons, 4100 Legendary Dr. in Destin.

Baytowne Wharf: Make a visit to see Santa a family affair at the Village of Baytowne Wharf, Sandestin. Each Wednesday night in December enjoy a live concert at 6 p.m. in the Events Plaza. The concerts are also accompanied by a choreographed light show and Santa will be there to meet the children. Event is held 6-8 p.m. Dec. 6, 13 and 20.

Grand Boulevard: Visit Santa 2-3 p.m. every Saturday through Dec. 16 in the Grand Park of Grand Boulevard in Miramar Beach. Also enjoy free crafts with Abrakadoodle and stroll through the park to admire the Christmas trees of the Festival of Trees.

Silver Sands Premium Outlets: How about eating cookies with Santa? Check out the Silver Sands Premium Outlet Mall on Dec. 2 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and take part in free cookie decorating, face-painting and a special surprise from Santa. Silver Sands Premium Outlets is at 10562 Emerald Coast Pkwy. W in Miramar Beach.

Pier Park: Santa has come to Pier Park in Panama City Beach and will be avaliable for photos through Dec. 24 near Kilwins Chocolates and Ice Cream. At Pier Park, pets can visit Santa too during special Pet Photo Night Hours on Dec. 10 5-7 p.m. Visit www.simon.com/mall/pier-park.

HarborWalk Village: Meet both Santa and Mrs. Claus at the main stage of HarborWalk Village every noon-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 17. Every child gets a free 4x6 photo and if they bring a letter for Santa, and  HarborWalk Village will donate $1 to the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center. HarborWalk Village is at 10 Harbor Blvd. in Destin. 

For additonal fun with Santa, reserve your spot at the Emerald Grande for Breakfast with Santa on Dec. 9, 10, 16 or 17 from 8 to 10 a.m. Children can meet Santa, participate in holiday crafts and story time and take home a special treat. Price is $15 per child or $16 per adult. Call 424-0622.

LuLu’s Destin: You may have heard of Santa Claus, but have you ever met his beach-loving brother Billy Claus? Visit LuLu’s Destin on Dec. 10 at 1 p.m. to meet Billy Claus and the LuLuBelles for a free event including a special reading of "Billy Claus and the Spirit of Christmas Island," arts and crafts and a photo. LuLu’s Destin is at 4607 Legendary Marina Drive in Destin.

Yule of Yesteryear: Travel back in time with the 2017 Yule of Yesteryear Festival 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 9 at the Heritage Museum of Northwest Florida in Valparaiso. Enjoy music by local choirs, historical re-enactors and free admission into the museum. There will also be free ornament crafts for children, a holiday bake sale, food vendors, craft vendors and free photos with Santa. The Heritage Museum of Northwest Florida is at 115 Westview Ave. Visit www.heritage-museum.org

Christmas in the Park: The Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce is hosting their annual Christmas in the Park event at Navarre Park 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 2. A parade will be held at 1 p.m. starting from the Navarre Library. The festivities continue at the park where Santa, Mrs. Claus and the Grinch will be available for photos. There will also be free baked goods and hot beverages, free children's crafts, a concession stand, music from local choirs and a Holiday Marketplace with local arts and craft vendors. The evening ends with a tree lighting at 5:15 p.m. Visit www.navarrechamber.com.   

Grayton Beach: How about a Christmas party for kids and adults? Grayton Beer Co. is hosting their 2nd Annual GRAYT Holiday Market noon-6 p.m. Dec. 2 at the Grayton Beer Taproom, 217 Serenoa Road in Santa Rosa Beach. For the kids, Santa will be there to meet and greet, and for the adults there will be a local curated vendor market, live music, food and of course craft beer. Visit http://www.sowal.com.

Breakfast with Santa: Enjoy breakfast with Santa while supporting a local charity 8:30-10 a.m. Dec. 9 at The Courtyard Sandestin Bistro, 100 Grand Boulevard in Miramar Beach. Fifty-percent of the breakfast proceeds will go to support Food For Thought Outreach. Participants of the breakfast will also enjoy a complimentary keepsake photo with Santa. For more information, email contact@howardhsp.com.