Santa, Small Businesses Highlight Saturday in Oak Lawn

Santa made an early visit again this year in Oak Lawn, making sure to stop by Saturday at the annual Santa on the Green.

Located across from the Oak Lawn Public Library between 95th Street and Cook Avenue, the event drew plenty of children, who frolicked with holiday spirit with ornament decorating, carnival rides and, of course, the chance to meet Old Saint Nick himself.

The long line to visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus seemed well worth it for the youngsters, who were eager to let them know what they wanted most this holiday season.

Mikaila Schneider, 5, said, “I asked for a Frozen doll collection because ‘Frozen’ is my favorite movie.”

Santa was not without his little helpers, who volunteered their Saturday.

“Giving the kids presents and making them happy is a great reward. It really gets everyone in the spirit of Christmas,” said Kerri Olson, 13, who dressed as an elf to help hand out candy and Frisbees to the kids after their visit with Santa.

Festive music and hot chocolate made for an exciting holiday atmosphere for the families. Trolley rides passed by every 15 minutes to take visitors to and from the Metra station, which held an event as part of Small Business Saturday, a national promotion for small businesses.

For the first time, Oak Lawn teamed with local businesses to encourage “shopping small” this holiday season. Kate Narbone, a member of the Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce, said a chamber committee started planning in July for the event.

She said the chamber wanted to do something special to support the village’s smaller businesses.

“They fuel the community as a whole. It is important to spend your money in your community in order to give back to your community,” Narbone said.

At the train station, local owners had booths to promote their businesses, set up with samples and general merchandise from the businesses.

[Via: The Southtown Star]

About Allison Matyus