WALLINGFORD — Residents didn’t have to go far Saturday to enter a winter wonderland.
The town hosted the annual Seasons of Celebration holiday event, which started in front of Town Hall. Families flocked to South Main Street to join in on the festivities, which included horse and carriage rides, a petting zoo, arts and crafts and food, all free of charge.
Later in the afternoon, they would have the chance to participate in the annual Frosty Parade down Center Street and town tree lighting at Johanna Manfreda Fishbein Park.
Volunteer Cheryl Russo greeted families with complimentary cookies.
“I tell everyone to take one with M&Ms and chocolate chips, because if you take one you might as well go all the way,” she said with a laugh.
Kids were more than happy to take a cookie from Russo before standing in line in front of Town Hall for the chance to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus.
“This is a good opportunity for families to enjoy doing something together,” said Russo. “Now that all my kids are older, I get to enjoy the young part of Christmas again.”
One little girl who was intent on enjoying the “young part of Christmas” was Alyssa Wiener. After waiting patiently in line to see Santa, Wiener took her picture and confidently gave him her Christmas wish.
“I want two baby elephants,” she said.
Daryll Porto, one of the toy soldiers standing guard outside of Santa’s workshop, said that all the kids who had climbed the steps to Town Hall “are super excited.”
“This is my second year doing this,” he said. “It helps kick off the holiday spirit and it’s all about family.”
The event is organized by the Wallingford public celebrations committee.
“There isn’t anything the parents have to plan for other than coming and having a nice day with their children and their family members,” said committee chair Roz Gallagher. “We’re all just strolling our streets and seeing our merchants. It’s just a very warm and hospitable feeling. It’s a real Wallingford feeling.”