Santa touring city on Christmas Eve

Santa hands out candy during this year's Alabaster Christmas parade. He will be touring the city on a fire truck on Christmas Eve. (Reporter Photo/Jon Goering)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

The Alabaster Fire Department will escort Santa Claus around the city on Christmas Eve shortly before the jolly man returns to the North Pole to take his journey around the world.

Kris Kringle will begin touring Shelby County’s largest city at 1 p.m. on Dec. 24, and will wrap up at about 8:30 p.m.

In the past, Santa began traveling around Alabaster at sunset, but the city’s explosive growth over the past several years caused the fire department to begin the trip earlier in the afternoon, said Alabaster Fire Chief Frank Matherson.

“We used to try to start at dark, but we weren’t getting done until midnight,” Matherson said with a laugh. “Starting earlier allows us to ride Santa around and get him back in time for his yearly trip.”

In addition to personnel at Alabaster’s three fire stations, the city also gets help from local students and organizations during the tour.

Because Santa’s route may be affected by emergency calls, Matherson said residents should expect St. Nicholas 30 minutes before or after his scheduled arrival time. Residents are also encouraged to gather near the red and yellow “Santa Stop” signs posted along Santa’s route.

At 1 p.m., Santa will visit Portsouth, Norwick Forest, Kingwood, Spring Gate and Cedar Grove. At 1:30 p.m., he will visit the Cedar Grove mobile home park and Sterling Gate. The tour will continue with Woodland Hills at 1:40 p.m. and Southwind, Meadowlark, Willow Creek and Willow Point at 1:45 p.m.

Santa will visit Northwest and Olde Town at 1:55 p.m., Chinaberry at 2 p.m., Eaglewood, Cambridge Pointe I and Summerbrook at 2:15 p.m., Lacey’s Grove at 2:20 p.m., Falling Waters at 2:30 p.m., the Knox mobile home park at 2:35 p.m., Greenfield at 2:40 p.m. and Maylene and Applegate at 2:45 p.m.

The tour will continue to Grande View Gardens at 2:35 p.m., Greenfield at 2:40 p.m., Navajo Hills North at 2:50 p.m., Cambridge Pointe II at 2:55 p.m., The View apartments at 3 p.m., Grande View Estates at 3:05 p.m., Shalimar Pointe, Ashford Heights, Northeast and Hickory Hills at 3:20 p.m., Bermuda Lake and Oakwood at 3:35 p.m. and Maplewood Trail, Shady Oak Lane and Autumn Ridge at 3:50 p.m.

Mission Hills, the Peavine mobile home park, Berryhill and Southwest will receive visits at 4 p.m., Wynlake will be at 4:10 p.m., Lake Terrace will be at 4:15 p.m., Wellington Manor will receive a visit at 4:20 p.m., Silver Creek will be at 4:25 p.m., Weatherly and Shelby Farms will be at 4:35 p.m., Southfield Gardens will be at 4:40 p.m. and Golden Meadows will be at 4:45 p.m.

Santa will visit Park Forest and Navajo Hills at 4:50 p.m., Amberly Woods at 5:30 p.m., Siluria and Apache Ridge at 5:35 p.m., Park Forest Village at 6 p.m., Meadowview, Willow Glen, Southeast and Iron Wood at 6:05 p.m., the Woodbrook apartments at 6:10 p.m., Buck Creek Landing at 6:25 p.m., Navajo Pines at 6:30 p.m., Windy Oaks and Douglas Meadows at 6:35 p.m., Park Place at 6:45 p.m. and Scottsdale at 6:55 p.m.

The tour will continue at 7 p.m. at Stoney Meadows, The Meadows at 7:05 p.m., Crim Drive and Cedar Meadows at 7:10 p.m., the Keystone mobile home park at 7:15 p.m., Stage Coach at 7:20 p.m., Fox Valley Farms and Kentwood at 7:25 p.m., Timber Ridge at 7:30 p.m., the Terri Lynn mobile home park, First Avenue West and the 2000 block at 7:35 p.m., Green Valley and Tanglewood at 7:40 p.m., Lake Forest at 7:45 p.m., Smokey Ridge at 7:50 p.m., Mountain Lake at 7:55 p.m., Dogwood Forest and Forest Hills at 8 p.m., Carriage Hills at 8:10 p.m., The Grove at 8:15 p.m. and Wisteria at 8:20 p.m.