ANDOVER — Dozens of people lined Andover Square to welcome Santa Claus and view the Christmas parade during the annual Simply Christmas celebration.
Christy Paul, the event chairwoman, said it is sponsored annually by the Andover Area Chamber of Commerce and the group tries to add something different each year. She said new decorations were added this year and a Santa’s mailbox for children to place letters.
Paul said wreaths were also placed at the village military memorials in the square. Chili and chicken noodle soup were on sale and hot chocolate was available.
Another addition helped warm children and provide a sweet treat for the night. “We have fire barrels for smores,” she said.
Samantha Kume brought her almost 1-year-old daughter Ashton Richards to the parade.
“It was great,” Kume said.
Meeting Santa was the most important part of the evening, Kume said.
A little later the young one was a little apprehensive meeting Santa, but dozens of children waited in line to have their pictures taken.
Clinton Hussing was the disc jockey playing Christmas Carols and called the countdown to the lighting of the village square.
“Let’s hear it for Santa,” he said to the children as Santa arrived on an Andover Fire Department truck.
The parade circled the village square and included several floats, the Pymatuning Lake Festival royalty and numerous fire engines.
Parents had the opportunity to take pictures of their children on Santa’s lap. Many children reacted with excitement and others were a bit scared.