Photo by Heather Middleton
By Mehgaan Jones
Local children patiently waited for a special guest to arrive, in the children's section of the Clayton County Headquarters Library, in Jonesboro Tuesday.
As they entered a back room of the library, they discovered the spirit of Christmas cheer, and saw -- sitting in a wooden chair -- Santa's beloved wife, Mrs. Claus, who greeted the children with smiles and hugs.
The library hosted its "Breakfast with Mrs. Claus" program, on Tuesday morning, for the fourth time since 2006, according to Bea Mengel, the Headquarters Library youth services librarian.
It was such a success, early on, that the library decided to make it an annual event, said Mengel.
She assumed the character of Mrs. Claus, as she was outfitted in a red dress, white apron, red hat, gray wig, and small wire-framed glasses.
"It's like seeing a celebrity...since they can't see Santa themselves...it kind of reminds them that Santa is busy around this time of year," Mengel said.
She read two books to the children. They sang holiday songs such as "Deck the Halls" and "Santa Claus is Coming to Town," and danced to other Christmas music.
"I definitely see a lot of commercialism in the holiday...I try to put that little message in there that it [Christmas] is about having a good heart for giving," said Mengel.
Headquarters Youth Services Assistant Diane Flores, played the role of an elf, dressed in a green suit, with elf-like ears, and shoes which were perfect for the costume.
"All the kids keep telling me that my shoes are cute," Flores said with laughter.
The program is good for children to hear stories and be together with other children their age, she added.
Blondell Green, of Jonesboro, brought her granddaughter, 2-year-old, Trinity Robinson, to the breakfast, to interact with other kids.
"She is not in Pre-K yet, so this gives her an opportunity to interact with other kids," said Green.
Riverdale resident, Tahyna Morris, recently moved to Georgia from New Hampshire, and has six children, ranging in age from four months, to nine-years-old. She said that the library always provides free, family-oriented activities, so when she heard about the breakfast, she knew she wanted her children to participate.
"They're happy and having fun, so I am happy," Morris said.
After the children spent time with Mrs. Claus, they had waffles for breakfast, which was provided by a local Waffle house restaurant.
Mengel said that every year, Waffle House has provided breakfast for the children.
The breakfast was followed by a personal photo shoot with Mrs. Claus, after which the children received cherry-flavored candy canes.