NewsCovering Colorado


Santa's workshop and festive lights, many families celebrate the holiday season in the snow

Posted at 9:07 PM, Nov 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-25 00:54:46-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — The snow and cold temperatures are not stopping families from visiting Colorado's North Pole. Located at the base of Pikes Peak, The North Pole, Home of Santa’s Workshopserves as a Christmas theme amusement park with vintage rides and it has been doing so for more than 65 years.

Since 1956 families of all ages have visited the amusement park.

“It's a family tradition,” said the Reilly family.

Every Thanksgiving the Reilly family travels from Nebraska to see their grandmother in Colorado

“We help prepare the thanksgiving feast and then on the day after we get up and see Santa and ride the rides and start the holiday traditions,” said the Reilly family.

There are plenty of activities for people to enjoy at the North Pole. For instance they have several vintage rides, cups of hot chocolate, a warm fire to roast marshmallows on, a free magic show and more.

The manager of The North Pole, Austin Lawhorn, said they also have a glass blower and chairlift ride.

“On a cold day, even when it is 16 degrees and snowing, this will be a memory,” Lawhorn said.

The winter wonderland has been in Austin Lawhorn's family for generations. Lawhorn is third generation.

“It's really a way of life for us, it is an honor to be a part of family tradition in Colorado Springs,” Lawhorn said

Lawhorn said 70-80% of the people who visit the north Pole have been before.

“They come here through the generations. You will see whole groups of adults because they are kind of reliving their childhood memories,” Lawhorn said.

She said the North Pole is not just for kids.

“The world has changed in so many ways, but what has not changed is what is important to families and what's important to children and that is shared time and shared memories,” Lawhorn said.

It's a place that is described as being inside of a snow globe.

“It's magical today,” said the Reilly family. “It's what you would expect to see at the north pole."

It would not be the North Pole without Santa.

The Harlin family from Texas visited the North Pole on Friday for the first time.

“We liked Santa right, we definitely had to come see Santa and the snow of course,” the Harlin family said.

There were also many statues and characters like snowman and Rudolf the red nose reindeer.

“It's definitely getting us into the spirit,” said the Reilly family.

While meeting Santa at the North Pole is one tradition, seeing holiday lights is another.

“Colorado springs everyone loves their lights, everyone loves to get in their cars and drive around the neighborhood,” Alyssa Tucci said.

Alyssa Tucci is the Front of House Manager for the Magic of Lights.

“Magic of Lights is a drive through light experience, it is our second time doing it here at PPIR. This year we added a village so you can go inside and see Santa, get some pictures with him, we have some concession stands, so you can get some hot chocolate, cider and get some goodies,” Tucci said.

Magic of Lights is a drive through light show and a holiday village. Driving through, people can see many different light displays such as the nativity scene, Santa with the dinosaurs, twelve days of Christmas and more.

“It's a 2.2 mile course. You just drive your vehicle the rest of the way and see some really cool displays,” Tucci said.

From now till New Years eEve people can drive through tunnels of lights at the Pikes Peak International Raceway.

“We have different displays you would not be able to see at houses like we got Barbie and Bigfoot out there,” Tucci said.

Tucci said it is a warm and simple way to celebrate the holidays with your family.

“It's just a really fun thing to add on to your holiday tradition since you are already spending time with family,” Tucci said.

There are plenty more holiday events and festivitiesfor people to enjoy in Southern Colorado.

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