Visitors driving through the township on Saturday, Dec. 15, may have been puzzled by the constant sounds of fire-truck sirens.
But, families in each of the neighborhoods of Lower Providence new exactly what the sound meant.
As the sirens grew louder, township families, led by their excited children, burst out of their doors looking for the arrival of Santa Claus.
Starting at around 9 a.m. and finishing up by dusk, the Lower Providence Fire Department (LPFD) escorted Santa Claus himself to greet the nearly 22,000 residents in all the neighborhoods of the 14-square mile township.
“We used to chase Santa on our street,” Kyle Lochner, 15-year LPFD volunteer firefighter, said.
Lochner, who has helped with the Santa Run each year of his LPFD career, explained that he recalled his own excitement of Santa’s arrival in his Lower Providence neighborhood as a child.
Township officials estimate that the Santa Run is over 30 years old, with this year’s event having the most participation from residents.
In addition to helping Santa greet township families, LPFD volunteers also collected non-perishable food items from the residents for the Lower Providence Caring and Sharing Program. Throughout the day, an LPFD fire truck would return to its station to drop off the food items or be met while on the road by Charlie DeFrangesco, Lower Providence Fire Marshal, and Bill Roth, Director of Special Projects & Technology, for the collection.
“It’s great for the public to help out the township and collect food for the Caring and Sharing Program,” Lochner said.
At the Deptford Place Apartments in Eagleville, several families in the early morning were glad to donate bags of food for the program.
When asked why they came out to participate with this year’s Santa Run, Ivy Golson, 9, of Eagleville Elementary, responded with a smile.
“So, Santa could give them to the less fortunate for Christmas,” she said.
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