Rancho Santa Fe Awww: Alpaca Ambassadors

Meet Santa -- and Santa's fuzzy crew -- at Frosty Farm.

Helen Woodward Animal Center

SANTA AND HIS FUZZY ONES: It's not unusual to picture a particular Mr. Kris Kringle in his toy workshop, or holding a cup of cocoa, or making his naughty/nice list, or sitting by the fireside with his honeybunch. But we Jolly Ol' Elf aficionados frequently visualize him surrounded by his steeds, Rudolph and company, and other woodland animals, too. There's a very strong natural component to the yuletide, and not making animals a part of it, whether they're the pets in your own home or the nature-filled ornaments on your tree, just doesn't seem right. But how to both see Santa Claus and say hello to some hoof-rocking, snout-sweet, beautiful beasties of the season? Why you make for Frosty Farm, a year-end yuletide treat presented by the Helen Woodward Animal Center. The farm pops up each weekend day through Sunday, Dec. 20 at the center's education building, which is located at 6461 Apajo Road in Rancho Santa Fe. And look at who might greet you, or at least give you a soft-eyed glance or two, during your visit there: Kronk and Kuzco, a pair of holiday alpacas given the lofty and significant title of Frosty Farm ambassadors.

MEET THE POLAR DOG: Santa's "polar" pup will also be in the house, as well as several hands-on activities, from the making of crafts to the painting of faces to the sipping of hot chocolate to the decorating of cookies. There's also a "meet-and-greet" with several sweet associates of the Helen Woodward Animal Center, "including rabbits, doves, sheep, mini horses, chickens, and, of course, our adorable alpacas Kronk and Kuzco." "Bring a camera," advises the center, if you want a snap with some of the members of Santa's awesome woodland brigade. 

AS FOR TICKETS? Kids are $23 and grown-ups are $12, and "all funds" go to the center's many animal-assisting programs. This is a popular one, people, so best register your wee animal fan for a Santa slot ahead of making for Rancho Santa Fe.

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