When I was a little girl, I loved Christmas, not just because I received presents, but there is just something so magical and joyous about this time of the year. My three year old is no different. Though it is now July, she will still sing the Christmas version of the Sesame Street Parade and still makes references about Santa. So when we went to have a Day Out With Thomas Last weekend, I figured it would be a great idea to stop off to the National Christmas Center, which was not too far away in Paradise, PA, before going home. At first, my husband joked that the place was closed because there was only one car in the large parking lot, but I assured him that I double checked the hours online.
Upon walking through the entry door, it was beginning to look a lot like Christmas. There were decorations, trees and Santa. It was set up like a Christmas Museum, and there was a $12 fee for touring the facility. I was glad that the parking lot was empty because we were able to take our time without the bombardment of several people. The Christmas displays were from Nativity scenes around the world, the evolution of Santa Claus around the world and even Christmas through the eyes of children from different decades and countries among other displays.
Quinn enjoyed the exhibits, but something I did not think about, however, was that while there were many cardboard cutouts of Santa, decorative figures and even lifelike mannequins of Santa, Santa, in human form, was not there. This did not sit well with my daughter who kept asking, “Where’s Santa? When are we going to see Santa?” I had tot explain to her a few times that he was in the North Pole working, which she eventually accepted.
I would recommend this place to anyone who loves Christmas and has children who love Christmas. Just make sure the kids know that the “real” Santa will not be there. It was a lovely family experience and brought back some great childhood memories for me too.
All the best,