Otsego public works garage transformed

by Jim Boyle


The Otsego public works garage became a landing zone for Ol’ St. Nick and Mrs. Claus on Dec. 12, and a stream of more than 400 vehicles came to see the jolly fella.

The North Pole-themed drive-thru event followed the success of the city’s drive-thru Pumpkin Patch.

“In order for us to provide some normalcy during this pandemic, our staff really had to get innovative to make sure what we provided was a quality experience,” said Ross Demant, Otsego’s director of parks and recreation.

“Working with the Otsego Parks and Recreation Commission, the city really wanted to provide an opportunity where people could still experience the holidays while staying safe and following the governor’s guidelines,” Demant said.

The reaction during and after the event has been overwhelming, Demant said.

“I think everyone was just really appreciative of being able to get out with their family and experience Santa and the holidays,” Demant said.

One parent remarked: “It was wonderful! My son can’t stop talking about it!”

Otsego officials estimate more than 400 vehicles came through. Donations were collected for Community Aid Elk River, the local food shelf, and Gifts Anonymous.

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