Santa's Castle has had yet another successful year. Over 6000 people traveled to Storm Lake to take in this local attraction's holiday excitement.
Four and five generations of families came together to enjoy the "Nutcracker" displays. Over 900 pictures were taken with Santa on the new digital camera equipment set up by Rebnords Technology.
There were over a 1000 hours of volunteer time used to run things smoothly, taking tickets and taking pictures! Without these dedicated volunteers, the experience of Santa's Castle would not happen.
The idea of Holiday animation being on display stared back in 1963 when the Chamber of Commerce purchased the first animated characters. The collection grew over the years to include over 100 pieces valued at $300,000. Many are from the late 30's and 40's when large department store windows were filled with animation.
The displays found in the Castle are rotated every year sending some to storage while restoring and bring new life to characters not seen for some time. Candy Clough is the director of the Castle and is always busy planning for next year's theme and searching for new ideas. The Castle now has a mascot, Scruffles the Mouse, whose likeness can be found through out the Castle hiding in the trees or in a display just waiting for the children to find him.
In the basement of the Castle is a large railroad layout with mountains and villages, lakes and streams for the many trains to travel by. Burt Bonebrake is the head engineer and has volunteered hundred of hours designing and creating this for the enjoyment of children of all ages.
The Castle is available year round by appointed for bus and group tours. If you are interested please call the Storm Lake Chamber of Commerce at 712-732-3780 for additional information. Also check out the web site at www.stormlakechamber.com
"Santa's Castle would like to thank everyone who has helped with the displays, donated funds, volunteered to work and brought their families to the Castle," Marilyn Monson of the Storm Lake Chamber of Commerce said. The Castle would not be possible with out your continual support and enthusiasm! Thank you!