Santa Claus spreading Christmas cheer from a vintage fire truck has become an annual favorite among both the young and young at heart in the area, thanks to volunteers from the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch. --File photo

Santa Claus spreading Christmas cheer from a vintage fire truck has become an annual favorite among both the young and young at heart in the area, thanks to volunteers from the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch. --File photo

Santa Claus is coming on a fire truck

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By Alexis Bocanegra

Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge

(773) 949-1509 • grcl.alex23@gmail.com

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In less than two weeks the Christmas countdown begins. So what does that mean? Santa Claus is coming to town! For many of us, the preparation and anticipation start the day after Halloween. When the weather starts to get cooler, this usually means it’s time for Christmas movies, gingerbread cookies and hot chocolate.

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Alexis Bocanegra

I look forward to listening to Christmas music on the radio and seeing the houses and front lawns decorated with colorful lights, decorations and inflatables throughout the neighborhood. Yet, I could do without the overcrowded stores.

Apart from my family tradition of decorating our Christmas tree and watching the movie Elf, I still look forward to a local holiday tradition, Santa driving down my block on a fire truck! Santa will drive around the Garfield Ridge and Clearing neighborhoods next weekend to help kick off the festive season.

Mark your calendar because Santa will be going down your block. Santa’s GPS is set for Garfield Ridge on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 3 to 9 p.m. On Sunday, Dec. 10 he will go through Clearing from 4 to 8 p.m.

Follow the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch on Facebook and click on the Santa Tracker to monitor his route. Be ready to come outside and wave to Santa and the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch group. Santa will be on a shiny red fire truck provided by the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch. Together they want to spread holiday cheer and show neighborhood support.

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Santa Claus spreading Christmas cheer from a vintage fire truck has become an annual favorite among both the young and young at heart in the area, thanks to volunteers from the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch. –File photo

A big shout-out to the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood board members for bringing Santa to town and for continuing the tradition.

Also in December

  • The GRNW will be hosting the 8th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting and Kindl Mart at Wentworth Park, 57th and Narragansett, from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2. Bring the family for a winter wonderland of fun.
  • Crafters interested in participating in the Kindl Mart can contact Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch’s Arlene at (773) 229-1993. Limited spots are available for $25 per table. What you sell must be hand-crafted holiday items.
  • The Garfield Ridge Branch Library, 6348 S. Archer, will be hosting multiple holiday events. Get into the Christmas spirit with a free concert. The Young Family will be performing, featuring violins and cellos, at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 2. Children ages 5 and up, as well as adults of all ages are welcome.
  • The Garfield Ridge Branch Library is also hosting its annual wreath craft activity. It will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 12 at 5:30. p.m. This is an “adults only” event, and limited space is available. Both events require registration at chipublib.org/Events. For details, call (312) 747-6094.
  • Children ages 3-13 and their parents are invited to Crafternoon, set for 1 to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 25 at the Clearing Branch Library, 6423 W. 63rd Place. All materials are provided. Just bring yourself and your creativity. Spots are limited, and online registration is required. Call the Clearing Branch for details, (312) 747-5657.
  • The Clearing Night Force neighborhood watch group and Hale Park are hosting a craft and vendor fair from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 16 at the park, 6258 W. 62nd St. Activities will include pictures with Santa (2-4 p.m.), kids’ crafts and local holiday vendors. It’s open to everyone in the neighborhood, free of charge. Those interested in participating as a crafter or vendor may call (773) 229-1023. Table space is available for $20 a spot.
  • If you’re looking to buy a Christmas gift that’s definitely local, unique and perhaps a bit quirky, the Clear-Ridge Historical Society suggests purchasing any or all of three books: A History of Garfield Ridge, A Little Known Story of a Land Called Clearing and Gleanings of Archer Road. Each is published by the non-profit CRHS, and each is available for a reasonable price at Midway Jewelers, 5635 W. 63rd St. Buy it there, and 100% of the proceeds go right back to the CRHS.

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