Just down the road from Lincoln’s boyhood home, we made a pit stop in Santa Claus, Indiana, “America’s Christmas Hometown.”
Apparently people once sent their Christmas cards there (maybe they still do?) to get the “Santa Claus” postmark.
Even though we visited on a brutally hot August day, it’s always Christmas in Santa Claus. The strip mall is called Kringle Place, home to Holiday Foods and the Santa Claus Museum. There’s Santa’s Candy Castle, and, across the street, you’ll find Lake Rudolph Campground and RV Resort. There was even a car wash covered in holiday decorations (unfortunately I deleted the photo).
Santa Claus is home to Holiday World, a Christmas-themed amusement park (There’s also Splashin’ Safari Water Park).
Normally, I don’t want to hear one note of a Christmas carol before Thanksgiving, but I found Santa Claus, Indiana, to be kind-of fun. It was like we fell into a Hallmark Channel movie. We just needed to find the crusty old-timer or the jaded city slicker who needs to rediscover the holiday spirit!
Santa himself lives in the North Pole at the convergence of all time zones, and Santa Claus, Indiana, is sort-of timeless as well. The town sits near the line between the Eastern and Central time zones , so my mom and I never quite knew what time it was.
We didn’t see Santa himself, but we certainly enjoyed out brief pit stop in Santa Claus.
I grew up in southern IL, and we went on several excursions to Santa Claus IN and Holiday World. I still prefer Holiday World to Six Flags and the like, it always tended to be less crowded, less expensive, and there’s more to do there if you don’t just like roller coasters ( like an awesome old style arcade – more mechanical games than video) . It has a holiday theme to a degree, one section was themed for Halloween, another for 4th of July, ect. Last time I was there they seemed to be minimizing the holiday theme though so it may be different now.