Santa is coming to Oceanside by boat, train and fire truck

OCEANSIDE — Among the holiday happenings are plenty of opportunities to visit with the man of the season. Santa Claus is coming to Oceanside by boat, train and fire truck.

Oceanside Adventures offers free boat rides with Santa.

The 20-minute ride loops around the harbor. Kids on board have time to talk to Santa and have their picture taken.

Carla Mitroff, Oceanside Adventures manager, said there was a very positive response from passengers last year and requests to offer the boat ride again.

“Everybody that came aboard thought it was the greatest idea,” Mitroff said.

A $3 donation from passengers to the Friends of Oceanside Parks is suggested as a community fundraiser. Boat rides take off from harbor docks from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 9.

The COASTER Holiday Express will have Santa, ice princesses and carolers aboard. North County Transit will run five nonstop holiday trains from Oceanside to Solana Beach and back.

During the one-hour ride Santa visits each train car and spends time with every child. Families are invited to take photos and enjoy the coastal view.

Carolers and storybook characters also go car to car to spend time with passengers.

The Holiday Express Train runs Dec. 9 and 10. Tickets for this year are sold out.

Santa can also be seen in the annual boat Parade of Lights around the harbor.

Boats of all sizes are decorated with inflatable Christmas trees, holiday ornaments and lights. Crews are also dressed for the season.

The boat parade is held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Dec 9.

Spectators can watch from shore or buy tickets to board a charter boat and be part of the parade. Helgren’s Oceanside Sportfishing and Oceanside Adventures both offer rides.

Trophies for the best decorated boats are awarded at the Oceanside Yacht Club immediately after the parade.

Santa will also be at the city Holiday Tree Lighting at Regal Cinema Plaza.

There will be free crafts and cookies and milk for kids.

Live music, ticketed horse and carriage rides and kiddie rides are part of the fun.

Santa arrives by vintage fire truck to help light the holiday tree. Afterward kids can visit with Santa and have their pictures taken by family.

The event takes place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec 7, in conjunction with the weekly Sunset Market.

Advice for all events is to arrive early to allow time for parking, and dress for the winter weather.

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