By LOIS KINDLE
The historic clubhouse and grounds of the GFWC Ruskin Woman’s Club will become a Christmas wonderland Dec. 10 during the 2nd annual Breakfast in Santa’s Village. It’ll take place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at 503 U.S. 41 S.
RSVPs are a must. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children, payable online at www.gfwcruskinwomansclub.org or by calling 813-296-3900.
This merry celebration morphed from three previous Breakfast with Santa events the club hosted, then expanded and renamed last year. Breakfast in Santa’s Village includes a full breakfast buffet for the entire family, live carolers, holiday music and Christmas characters, games, arts and crafts, gifts and much more.
Kids can earn “Grinch Bucks” playing a variety of outdoor winter-themed games, including Igloo (putt-putt) Golf, Penguin Bowling, Snowball Throw, Nutcracker Ring Toss, Snow Foam Pit and more, and then use their “cash” to purchase fun gifts in the toy store.
There will also be a bounce house, face painting, arts and crafts table, small petting zoo, music by DJ Charlie Spinz and Christmas carols by members of the East Bay High School Chorus.
The breakfast buffet will be indoors, where kids can meet Santa and Mrs. Claus [AKA Larry and Carol Berman], have photos taken with them and share their Christmas hopes and dreams. The free pics will be emailed to parents or grandparents after the event.
The indoor activities will also include a silent auction, featuring some big-ticket items like a three-night stay in a two-bedroom/two bath accommodation at the Hyatt Residence Club Key West, Sunset Harbor, next April, valued at more than $2,000; four club seats for a Tampa Bay Lightning game, valued at $1,400; tickets for four to the TreeUmph Adventure Course in Bradenton for hours of climbing, swinging and adventuring through the trees.
There will also be raffle prize drawings for a variety of cool items, including a Pampered Chef gift basket, liquor basket, Publix gift cards and charcuterie basket, three bicycles and more.
Raffle tickets are $1 each, $10 for 11 tickets and $20 for 21 tickets. All proceeds will be used to award scholarships to local students for their first year of college or trade school.
“This year’s event will be extra special,” said Cheryl DeLeon, committee chair. “We’ll be continuing this event in honor of my mother, Linda Sloat, who passed away in October. [The event] was her idea originally and is one of our club’s largest fundraisers.”
Last year, Breakfast in Santa’s Village netted $8,900 for the club’s scholarship fund.
“I’m so looking forward to this opportunity to bring it back to our community again this year, share opportunities for some good, old-fashioned family fun and feature our historic clubhouse,” said Kat Sherwood, club president. “It’s an exciting event for everyone involved, including our members. It makes us all feel like kids again.”
The Ruskin Woman’s Club is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization registered with the state of Florida.