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Saint Nick stops in Brewster

Brian Korthals/Daily Globe Four month old Khloe Post, Lakefield, sits on Santa's lap besides Mrs. Claus during Saturday's Old Fashioned Christmas festivities at the American Legion in Brewster.

BREWSTER -- Legendary gift-bringer Santa Claus took time Saturday from his busy pre-Christmas preparations to visit Brewster, hosting lap-side present negotiations with about 40 children in the American Legion Hall.

Young Colten Rossow, 4, ran right up to Santa as he came in through the back door -- the reindeer team preferred to wait near the kitchen -- and asked for two John Deere toys and a toy semi truck with a horse trailer.

Other children suddenly turned shy when faced with the famous Man in Red, either turning away from Santa or trying to hide behind their hands.

"I didn't say anything. My teeth were shivering!" reported Kalen McNab, 6, of Brewster.

There were even a few children who were a little afraid of Santa. Hannah Post, 1, of Lakefield, was clearly worried about approaching St. Nick, but after she received her treat bag, she was all smiles again, with the cheerful assistance of her mother, Nichole Post.

And then there were the proxy lap-sitters. Alyssa Like, 27, of Reading, was one of the few adults to sit on Santa's lap on the behalf of others. In this case, it was tiny Jakoby Like, 3 months, who slept soundly through his entire meeting with Santa, while curled up in Alyssa's arms.

She asked Santa for toys on Jakoby's behalf.

Popular requests of Santa this year were John Deere toys and legos, though tech toys such as the Nintendo DS requested by Dominic White, 8, were also a hot commodity. One girl asked for jewelry and pajamas.

"When they want baby sisters and brothers, that's a tough one for Santa," said Earl Slocum of Brewster, Santa's official public relations representative during his expedition to Brewster. Santa reported he usually told the children he'd have to talk to the good Lord about it.

Anticipation was running high before Santa's arrival, as children played and chatted with Mrs. Claus while they waited.

"Can you tell Santa to hurry up? These kids are getting restless," said Anya Hartzler, 11, a few minutes before Santa's scheduled arrival.

Hartzler and many other volunteers with the Brewster Community Club served a soup luncheon to more than 100 people Saturday, and then gave out Christmas door prizes to adults and children.

And every child who visited with Santa -- even the nervous ones -- received a bag of treats and had a picture taken.