LETTER TO THE EDITOR - SL should sell Santa's Castle

Wednesday, March 13, 2002

I've spent most of my life living in Storm Lake and after finishing my education and living in Spencer for a couple of years I am a social worker in east central Iowa. I can honestly say that I miss my former home more than I ever imagined. The lake is breath taking, I loved the people there and find myself bragging about what a wonderful place the City Beautiful has become.

Everyone I meet says it's a very nice area and many of them have memories of camping, fishing or their time at Buena Vista University. I have yet to hear anyone say a thing about Santa's Castle. People in Spencer don't know what it is either. I recently heard an interview on WHO radio where someone said they want to open the castle for the WHO tractor ride across Iowa next summer. Why? I'm sure the visitors will have as good a time as they did for RAGBRAI.

Storm Lake is a great place to be welcomed to and enjoy, but Santa's Castle?

I remember the first time I saw the Santa's Castle. There were a lot of Christmas paper and tired looking decorations on the walls around an overrated collection of reanimated junk. That was a number of years ago and now a handful of city fathers want to spend more money and time to keep this eyesore open year-around. I realize this is an expensive collection and at one time it brought a lot of people to the community. The people aren't coming and now we're going to abuse the spirit of Christmas by keeping it open year-around. Please stop, think and try to realize you're getting carried away. Why not sell the castle and its contents and use the money for a different Christmas attraction? The building may still have use for the community. Someone seems to be carrying this way TOO far and it's time to stop before it causes more expense and embarrassment.

Tom Sabel,