Although there’s less than a month left until Christmas, Santa took a little breather from the holiday rush on Saturday to soak in the San Diego sunshine and show off his surfing skills.
Clad in board shorts, a Hawaiian shirt and sunglasses, “Surfin’ Santa” – the epitome of a Southern California Santa – made his annual arrival at downtown San Diego’s Seaport Village.
Each year, Surfin’ Santa kicks off the holiday season in America’s Finest City by making a grand entrance on West Harbor Drive. With a jet pack strapped to his back, Santa cruised from the San Diego Bay into Seaport Village, making quite the splash along the way.
Santa dipped into the bay, jet packed up and down in the air and glided on top of the water as a crowd looked on and cheered.
Once on dry land, Santa took some time to take photos with kids on his surfboard and six-foot wave prop. Visitors were also treated to other festive activities including a parade, live entertainment and ornament-making at the event.
Being that it was Small Business Saturday, visitors were also encouraged to shop at the small, local stores and eateries lining Seaport Village.
Despite the many holiday-themed activities and beautiful backdrop of the bay, for younger visitors like brothers Joey and J.R. Welch, Santa’s flashy jet pack entrance was the highlight of the day.
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“I saw Santa come in on a jet pack and do some tricks and wave at people,” said Joey. “I think I want to jet pack someday.”
“He made himself look like he was walking on water!” added J.R. “It was pretty awesome.
Both Joey and J.R. said they have been good boys this year, so they’re in good standing with Santa.
Joey said this holiday season is extra special for him and his family because he spent last Christmas at Rady Children’s Hospital being treated for lymphoma.
But even grown-ups were impressed with Surfin’ Santa’s showmanship, including Michelle Jones and
Lori Donkersgoed, who were visiting from Utah.
“It was the coolest thing I have ever seen. It was amazing!” said Donkersgoed. “I didn’t even know Santa coming. I guess it’s magic. I shouldn’t doubt Santa.”
“It was awesome, seriously,” added Jones.