Santa Visits Haines City Fire Department For Fourth Year
by James Coulter
The children of Haines City were sure to better not shout, better not cry, and better not pout, because for the fourth consecutive year, they were visited by Santa Claus coming to their town.
On Saturday evening, the Haines City Fire Department hosted its fourth annual Santa at the Station. True to its name, both Santa and Mrs. Claus dropped by the station to visit all of the good children that lived within the city.
All of the good little boys and girls lined up outside of the station to meet Jolly Old Saint Nicholas himself for an opportunity to tell them their wishes and take a photograph with him.
Before and after, they could enjoy several fun activities within the station, including filling in coloring book pages, eating cookies, and drinking hot chocolate. They could also meet the local firefighters and take a look at one of the fire engines.
“The kids love to see trucks and fire fighters,” Holly Gorsline, Executive Assistant for the Haines City Fire Department. “Santa being here is always the best part for them.”
The fire department has hosted several local community events. In October, they hosted an open house, allowing local residents an opportunity to visit the station.
Their new fire chief, Jeffery Davidson, since obtaining his position last year, has been more than eager to engage the local community through events and outreaches such as this.
“So he is really big for doing things in the community,” Gorsline said. “We have been doing this for four years. The community, every year, appears to grow and grow. More and more people come out every year. We love to see more people at the station. The kids get to see Santa. I enjoy just seeing the community come out and see all of the kids and have everybody here.”
Haines City Mayor Morris West commented how events such as this and the parade hosted the following evening help bring the community together to celebrate the holidays. He hopes that such events will continue to grow.
“I hope we can continue to do this every year just to give back to the community, and that is what we are all about: giving back to our community,” he said. “Because they are community involved, that is what I appreciate. I think that we at the city we are very elated to have something like this that brings Santa…and bring back the annual Christmas parade.”