Thursday, December 26, 2013
Some of the best-behaved children in the area gathered at Inlet Square Mall’s center court Saturday to welcome a special guest.
Some were dressed in their Sunday best. Others clutched papers on which they had printed their hopes and dreams. And as the clock ticked down to 10:30 a.m., the excitement was palpable.
Suddenly, there he was. Towed on a Coastal Marine boat, Santa steered into the mall’s new holiday scene that had been erected especially for him.
As he disembarked from his fishing boat, the youngsters quickly surrounded him.
And the jolly old elf didn’t disappoint.
“What grade are you in this year?” he asked one youngster.
“Have you been brushing your teeth?” he queried another. And one by one they answered his questions, some shyly, some more boisterously.
“I get to talk to Santa,” said Isaac Lowery, 6, of Myrtle Beach, assuring the questioner – with a sideways glance at his mother – that he indeed had been a good boy this year.
McClure Hopkins, 5, of Murrells Inlet, who had been checking out the presents that led to Santa’s seat of honor with a sense of awe, was among the first to greet Santa, and it was obvious from the look McClure gave Santa that he did indeed believe in him.
For 3-year-old Wyatt James, Santa’s arrival was his chance to share his wish list, topped by a Skylanders and the SWAP Force figure, among this year’s hottest toys.
Jonathan Rivera’s list was longer, but not as specific. He wanted movies, a bike and toys.
Other special guests
While Santa was the guest of honor, the youngsters were just as taken with the other special guests.
Splash, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans mascot engaged some of the children, including a pair who found Santa just too intimidating. Also joining in the fun were the Sonic mascot and Mr. Peach from the mall’s newest store, the Fuzzy Peach.
Santa will be available for pictures through Christmas Eve. Check the mall’s website for his schedule.