Santa gets ready in hot-air balloon

Santa gets ready to lift off in a hot-air balloon at Martinez Elementary School on Saturday afternoon.

Santa took a Christmas Eve test flight in Martinez Saturday afternoon.

Before Dancer and Prancer, Santa went up in a hot air balloon from Martinez Elementary School. He also met some youngsters on the school’s playground even passed out candy canes.

One little boy ran toward him so quickly, he ran out of his shoe.

Kelly Jacobs said she brought daughter Jenny, 4, so she could tell him she was good one last time in case he forgot.

“We came out to see Santa and wish him luck on his big night,” Jacobs said. “Jenny was really excited.”

After Santa went around and greeted all the children, he jumped in the basket with Manny Bowie, owner of Rising Stars Balloon Team. He gave a big “Ho Ho Ho,” and waved to the crowd.

Santa takes a short flight with Bowie every year, as long as the weather cooperates. “It’s in holiday spirit,” Bowie said.

 

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