When you were a kid, tearing into the packages under the tree on Christmas morning, did you ever wonder what Santa Claus was doing at that moment? If you’re a kid in Saugerties, you know the answer to that one. Santa? He’s on a firetruck riding around the village of Saugerties giving out candy, just as he has been every year since 1919: doing his annual Candy Run on Christmas Day.
“It’s the 93rd year it’s been done here,” says fire chief Dave Mason. “Hard to believe, but in seven years we’ll be doing our 100th Candy Run.” Nobody seems to recall the exact origins of the tradition, he says, but who can argue with success? A few years back, they tried switching Santa’s Candy Run to a day other than the actual Christmas Day, says Mason, but it didn’t go over well, so they returned the tradition to December 25.
Starting around 9 a.m. on Christmas morning, Santa will ride the C. A. Lynch Hose Company #2 firetruck. He’ll hit every street in the Village of Saugerties, says Mason, handing out candy to everybody who comes out, many still in their pajamas. “We make a lot of noise with the siren, and make it a good day for everyone.”
All three companies that comprise the Saugerties Fire Department help out with the Candy Run; along with the C. A. Lynch Hose Company #2, the R. A. Snyder Hose Company #1 and the Washington Hook and Ladder Company #1 pack over a thousand small boxes with candy a week before Christmas, much of it purchased through donations from the community.
To help the fire department continue the tradition, checks made out to the C. A. Lynch Candy Fund can be mailed to treasurer Thomas Kimble at 43 Partition Street, Saugerties, NY 12477.
Santa’s Candy Run, Tuesday, December 25,Village of Saugerties; www.village.saugerties.ny.us.