Santa visits kids in Jackson, Wyoming, in a helicopter
Children in Teton County, Wyoming, got a holiday surprise last week — a visit from Santa, who rode in on a helicopter. After a foggy start to the day, Santa made it to several elementary schools, to the delight of hundreds of children.
Kids at Jackson Elementary were playing outside the school, just before they went home for winter break. Word had just gotten out that Santa was paying them a visit in a chopper — a brand new $7 million ship for Teton County Search & Rescue.
Their foundation received around 2,000 donations for the Mission Critical fundraiser this year.
The new helicopter may quicken response times for backcountry rescues.
“This is just a way for us to show appreciation for the community and all the support they gave for Mission Critical and all the support they gave us to get a helicopter, and really just a way to bring a little cheer for the kids,” said Don Watkins, a volunteer with the search and rescue operation. “It’s all about the kids.”
Suddenly off in the distance, the sound of rotor blades got louder. And the kids went bananas.
Santa landed in a red and black helicopter on the school field.
In his red suit and white beard he ran over the ice and snow, flanked by elves in rescue gear, while the kids screamed with joy.
Santa took time to hug hundreds of students, some who gave him presents to deliver to other children. Some kids gave him bracelets.
And then in a flash, it was time for him to take off and head back to the North Pole. But as he left he reminded everyone:
“The meaning of Christmas is love, family and friendship.”
And Santa said if sleigh ever breaks, or his reindeer need a rest — now he’s got a backup helicopter.
Copyright 2023 KHOL.
This story was shared via Rocky Mountain Community Radio, a network of public media stations in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and New Mexico including Aspen Public Radio.