For many Americans, Christmas is their favorite holiday. The holidays usher in an entire suite of time-honored traditions, like decorating the Christmas tree, hanging Christmas lights, mailing Christmas cards, and so forth. But no one does Christmas like the residents of Santa Claus, Indiana who voted on Christmas eve in 1852 to name the town Santa Claus. The town’s claim to fame is that it is the only town in the world with a post office officially named “Santa Claus.” Every year since 1914, an army of residents (called “Santa’s Elves) volunteer to open and respond to the more than 4 million letters that get mailed here. And each year, the post office holds a contest to choose a unique Christmas hand-cancellation mark that has been designed by a student who attends one of the local high schools.
The town, with a population of 2,463, is adjacent to three lakes, appropriately named Christmas Lake, Lake Noel, and Holly Lake. On December 25 1935, a 22-foot tall statue of Santa Claus was dedicated on one of the town’s tallest hills. There are two inscriptions at the base of the statue; there front panel reads “Dedicated to the children of the world in memory of an undying love.” An adjacent panel reads: “Life Hath Given Thee Nothing More Sweet Than The Patter of Little Feet Across Thy Floor.” The Santa statue is considered to be the oldest Santa statue in the world.
Naturally, the streets have Christmas-themed names, like Dasher Lane, Dancer Lane, Prancer Drive, Vixen Lane… you get the idea. Another of the town’s claims to fame are the many Christmas themed attractions. Industrialist Louis Koch built the first theme park in the world in 1946. It was originally named Santa Claus Land, however, the park grew and expanded its attraction over the years. In 1984, the name was changed to Holiday World & Splashing’ Safari. One of its rides, The Voyage, is considered one of the world’s best wooden roller coasters. The town still boasts several other Christmas-related attractions, such as Santa’s Candy Castle, the Santa Claus Museum, Frosty’s Fun Center, and Santa’s Stables.
Although Christmas Indiana is unique in its dedication to Christmas, there are several other cities and towns in the United States that have Christmas-related names with corresponding events and traditions devoted to the cherished holiday season:
Christmas City, Utah
Christmas Cove, Maine
Christmas Valley, Oregon
Holiday Hills, Illinois
Santa Claus, Arizona
Santa Claus, Georgia
Santa Claus, Indiana
Saint Nicholas, Florida
Saint Nicholas, Michigan
Saint Nicholas, Minnesota
Saint Nicholas, Pennsylvania
North Pole, Alaska
North Pole, Idaho
North Pole, New York
North Pole, Oklahoma
Read related posts: Life Lessons from Scrooge
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Trivia
The Origin of the Name Scrooge
The Inspiration for Dickens’ A Christmas Carol
Twas the Night Before Christmas
A Christmas Carol and It’s A Wonderful Life
Best Quotes from A Christmas Story
The Inspiration for Dickens’s A Christmas Carol
The Story Behind Scrooge
What is a First Edition of A Christmas Carol Worth?
The Story Behind “The Night Before Christmas”
For further reading: https://www.accuracyproject.org/towns-xmas.html
Weird Christmas by Joey Green