Dec. 20, 2004 Cruz Bay was lit up like the proverbial Christmas tree as several hundred St. John children lined up at the park gazebo to get their Christmas presents from Santa at the annual Governor's Christmas Party.
The Christmas tree lights went on when Gov. Charles Turnbull clicked the switch and the kids waited patiently for Santa to show up.
"It's fun to get presents," Sabrikah Bryan, 8, said as she and her brother, Hasani Liburd, 10, waited.
Hasani noted that his family was going to celebrate Kwanza instead of Christmas, but he still wanted his Christmas present.
Madison Weisan, 8, wanted her sister, Skyler, age eight months, to see Santa.
"She's never seen it, and I really want her to see it," she said, as baby sitter Macy Monteverde held Skyler on her lap.
While the presents, and of course, Santa, were the big draws, the performances that preceded his arrival attracted a big crowd.
The jump rope team Love City Leapers drew lots of attention.
"Don't try this at home," coach Pat Harley said, as the kids went through their paces.
She urged any children who want to give it a whirl to come out from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays at the Youth Center.
The Love City Pan Dragons and the Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Marching Band also put on shows.
Finally, Santa arrived on a fire truck, a St. John tradition.
The kids were also given goodie bags filled with cookies and candies.
Those over 10 had the chance to win a bicycle, courtesy of Turnbull.
The governor, along with Lt. Gov. Vargrave Richards, were on hand to celebrate the season.
"We must not forget the meaning of Christmas in Love City," Turnbull said with a red Santa hat on his head.
The Rev. Ray Joseph, who offered a prayer to start the ceremony, noted that it was the season when love came down.
"Bless all the children," he said.
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