Santa’s helpers in the heart of dairy land have been busy for the last few months, getting things ready to welcome about 4,000 school children and thousands of families this holiday season to the North Pole of Texas.
Aside from a few minor details which are being finished up this week, the Christmas display at is ready to go at 227 County Road 3378 in Pickton.
. The North Pole will be ready to go, barring inclement weather, this Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29-30. The train will run from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. nightly, each Friday and Saturday through Dec. 14, and Christmas week, Dec. 19-23.
All train rides are free. the route starts in Alan and Kim Screws’ front yard and continue across Happy Birthday Jesus bridge, through Santa’s Toy Shop, where they’ll be greeted either by Santa himself or one of his helper elves. Then, train riders will get a glimpse of the elf pond, where they just might spot a few of Santa’s helpers taking a break, the three crosses, a Live Nativity manned and numerous cutouts and lights. There’s even a place for kids to deposit their letters to Santa.
Those waiting are invited to stop by Kim’s Hot Chocolate Stand for a free cup of hot chocolate too. Kids will enjoy having a story read to them by Mrs. Claus in the Christmas Cottage. Families can stop by and have takes personal snapshots in the sleigh.
The entire experience is the brainchild of the Screws family, started with a community hayride and grew to a public event. With community support, the North Pole of Texas has become a holiday tradition for many, with more than 100,000 people visiting over the last 21 years.
“We humbly do this because God gave us the greatest gift of all, his son Jesus. We want everyone to know the real reason we celebrate Christmas is the birth of our savior Jesus Christ. We made the decision, as a family, to give Jesus first place and priority during the Christmas season and all throughout the year. We have purposed in our hearts to make Jesus the primary focus of Christmas and we want to help others do the same,” the Screws family notes.
The event is staffed entirely with family and community volunteers, including members of the Pickton-Pine Forest Volunteer Fire Department, and typically a few school and church groups too. Various area businesses also help sponsor costs of maintaining the holiday extravaganza, so that it can be offered as a Christmas gift from the Screws family and Pickton-Pine Forest communities to families.
While there is no charge, donations are accepted in the designated containers to benefit Fruitful Harvest Ministries and to help offset costs such as electricity, hot chocolate and replacement lights.