WAKEFIELD – With temperatures in the mid-50s, scores of children and families gathered on the Common early Saturday afternoon. Some sipped hot chocolate served by members of the Wakefield Lions Club. 

Before long, sirens could be heard in the distance. As the sound grew closer, excitement mounted. 

He’s coming!” shouted one parent. 

Soon, a Wakefield Police cruiser appeared on Main Street near the Rockery followed by a Wakefield Fire engine and a sleigh. As the procession circled the Common, several passengers could be seen riding in the sleigh, including a bearded figure dressed all in red. 

“There he is!” someone else shouted. “It’s Santa!” 

Cheers erupted as the procession turned left on Common Street. The shouting continued as Santa Claus and Miss Merry Christmas, Isla Nigro, pulled up to Santa’s Headquarters in a sleigh courtesy of Designer Lawn Sprinkler. 

Santa arrives 2023

SANTA CLAUS with (from left) Miss Merry Christmas Isla Nigro, Mia Campbell and Ava Campbell. (Mark Sardella Photo)

After greeting the children and pausing for a photo outside his headquarters, Santa went inside where he welcomed dozens of children and families who had come to visit and share their Christmas wishes. 

Santa’s arrival in Wakefield on Saturday marked the 64th annual Christmas Pageant sponsored by the Wakefield Lions Club, which also provides Santa’s local headquarters on the Common. Over the years, Santa has landed on the Common in a helicopter or been driven by a Fire Engine. In recent years, the Jolly Elf has arrived aboard Designer Lawn Sprinkler’s special sleigh. 

Children are welcome to visit between now and Dec. 23 and tell Santa what they would like for Christmas this year. Santa will be at his Headquarters on the Common Monday through Friday from 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. 

The Wakefield Lions Club was chartered on June 26, 1930, and is one of the oldest Lions Clubs in Massachusetts. The Lions are best known for fighting blindness, but they also volunteer for many different kinds of community projects – including caring for the environment, feeding the hungry and aiding seniors and the disabled. 

Santa arrives 2023

SANTA CLAUS disembarks from his sleigh after arriving at his headquarters on the Common on Saturday, (Mark Sardella Photo)