The Ward Melville Heritage Organization welcomed hundreds for its 40th Holiday Festival in Stony Brook Village Center Dec. 8.
The event kicked off with the arrival of Santa in a Stony Brook Fire Department truck and the Legends and Spies puppets procession led by Tom Manuel, president and founder of The Jazz Loft, and a New Orleans brass band.
The parade featured 14-foot puppets representing local historical figures such as philanthropists Ward and Dorothy Melville, Culper spies Caleb Brewster, Benjamin Tallmadge and Anna Smith Strong, shipbuilder Capt. Jonas Smith and American genre painter William Sidney Mount.
There was music from community school bands plus a petting zoo, holiday train display, carolers and decorated holiday windows at Wiggs Opticians.
According to Santa, based on children’s requests, Pokémon items and the Barbie DreamHouse are making comebacks. Other gift wishes included train sets, toy trucks, iPhones, drones and Xboxes. Dolls were the biggest request as well as puppies, which Santa checks with mommies and daddies first since they are a big responsibility.
Three children requested for their brothers to come back from the military and one 5-year-old boy asked for peace and love.