Head on over to Hanover, PA, on Friday, Nov. 28 as the holiday season officially kicks off. Aside from Black Friday sales and other seasonal happenings, the borough of Hanover is ringing in Christmas with a day of tidings and joy.
Get up and out early for the annual Christmas parade in the town square. The parade, which will take place at 8:30 a.m., will form at Baer Avenue, near the playground, and will then move about towards the square at 9 a.m. The parade will include a number of floats, walking units, bands, performing musicians and dancers, decorated bikes, and much, much more.
And who is the guest of honor? It’s none other than Santa Claus himself, in the flesh, as he heads over to his famous Santa Cabin, ready and waiting. Following the parade, Santa will head to his legendary cabin and get right on down to the business of visiting with children, as he’s been doing for 77 years now in Hanover’s town square.
Santa’s Cabin in Hanover’s main square began its tradition as a holiday mainstay in 1936, with a more permanent cabin fixture (the current one) having been established in 1937. However, the history behind the cabin’s eventual creation in the first place may date back to 1929 when the Chamber of Commerce, along with the Associated Gas and Electric System known as Met Ed joined forces to present a more attractive Christmas time feel for the community of Hanover with a community-wide decorating contest idea—possibly the foundations for the Christmas Spirit in Hanover. The Great Depression also likely helped to fortify this Christmas tradition when downtown merchants teamed up with the borough to attract customers with a town-wide decorating of the square. One local employee, John Fuhrman, even took on the role of Santa, and at some point, the tradition of children visiting with Santa emerged. So did a scheduled “Arrival of Santa” event to the downtown area. Before this tradition was hosted as a parade, however, early methods for Santa’s arrival varied. In 1934, for instance, Santa made his arrival via airplane at Hanover’s first landing field, Forney Airport on Boundary Avenue. He was then escorted to the Square by the kids and the Junior High band and distributed out oranges and candies before setting up shop at Wards.
And so the holiday traditions in Hanover continue even to this day. Following the parade tomorrow, in addition to Santa visits, you can expect a fun-filled day of special events including, but not limited to: face painting, ornament and cookie making, magic shows, Christmas Story times, history tours, and caroling. Also be sure to stick around for the annual tree lighting ceremony, which will take place at 7 p.m. in the Square.
Santa’s regular visitation hours will be as follows: Nov. 28 from 9 a.m. to noon, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Nov. 29 from 10 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Dec. 1, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Dec. 5, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Dec. 8 through Dec. 12 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Dec. 13, 10 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Dec. 15 through Dec. 19, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Dec. 20, 10 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Dec. 22, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Dec. 23, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. For more information on this and other Hanover holiday happenings, go to www.hanoverboroughyorkcountypa.info or www.hanoverpasantacabin.com.