By James Tiedemann
On Sat., Dec. 12, the Warwick Valley Knights of Columbus Council #4952 hosted a drive-thru breakfast with Santa at St. Stephen’s Church. During the event, 75 families and over 150 children drove through multiple stations where they received crafts, snacks, candy, and a toy from Santa Claus himself.
The traditional Breakfast with Santa, which usually took place in the gym of St. Stephen-St. Edward’s school, had to be cancelled this year due to the ongoing restrictions with the COVID-19 pandemic. This forced Deputy Grand Knight of the Council, Ernie Nitschke, to come up with a new plan to put on the event for the parish and local families.
“We were thinking that the way this year has gone for kids, we just couldn’t cancel the event. That’s where we came up with this drive-thru idea,” Nitschke said.
Families first checked in at the church’s main parking lot and then headed over to the road in front of the Parish Center. All the stations there were filled with the items that had been donated from various organizations including Shoprite, which donated donuts for each child’s snack bag. ESM Ferolie donated a large number of toys and candy to the event.
More than a dozen Knights and several volunteers were on hand to assist with directing the traffic and distributing the gifts to the children.
“Overall, the event went very well considering this was the first time we ever did a drive-thru style event,” Nistchke stated.
The Knights are hoping to be able to return to the regular format for next year’s Breakfast with Santa and are grateful for all those in the community who donated and helped with this year’s event.
The Gingerbread Man (John Pacos) greets families during the Warwick Valley Knights of Columbus Breakfast with Santa, a drive-thru event this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Baby Mickey Reagan, with dad Matt, is excited to see Santa during the annual Warwick Valley Knights of Columbus Breakfast with Santa, held as a drive-thru event this year due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The Warwick Valley Knights of Columbus #4952 held their annual Breakfast with Santa as a drive-thru event this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.