North Georgia's Santa Claus lives in Cherokee County on the south side of the city of Canton from the day after Thanksgiving to Christmas. Mrs Claus warming greets visitors to their house, then mom and dad can bring the kids around to Santa in his workshop.
Ssh! Don't tell anybody this secret. Santa Claus lives in North Georgia. Really!
Hidden near Sequoyah Park in somewhat rural Cherokee County, Santa and Mrs. Claus routinely draw thousands of people to visit them in their southern home. Since we first visited Santa in 2002, the joyful celebration has grown in both size and scope, to the point that Santa actually had to add a separate workshop to handle the increasing crowds. North Georgia's Santa has appeared on Canadian TV (the country closest to Santa's other home, the North Pole,) and in a golf club commercial. In spite of this Santa's spreading fame, Santa and Mrs. Claus cherish the holiday of Christmas mostly because of the faces of the children that come to visit each year.
Mrs. Claus greets visitors to Santa's home, the start of the fun. Once inside, however, visitors are magically transported to an elegant festival filled with all the symbols of Christmas. Watch for model railroad trains running on tracks with nearby villages lit for Christmas. This specially-lit area has a background of stars and is filled with those quaint homes and buildings that have been popular since the 1970's. In addition to the trains and villages, Santa and Mrs. Claus have one of the most extensive private collections of Christmas memorabilia in North Georgia, and it is fun to see even if the kids are grown and gone.
Baby Jesus in the manger
As you continue through the house and see Santa's kitchen and dining room where the table is festively decorated for a Christmas meal and some hot apple cider waits for thirsty or cold friends.
Throughout Mr. and Mrs. Claus's home are an array of Santa likenesses, in a variety of shapes and sizes. For example, an animated Dancing Santa is sure to attract attention. Another hallmark of the home is a large number of creches of every shape and size. After visiting his living quarters (yes, even Santa naps during his busiest time of the year) guests exit to the walkway to Santa's workshop.
From the house into the yard (expect a temperature in the 40's) the scene changes to one of an expanse of Christmas lights creating pathways to all-weather decorations. Fires can provide temporary relief from cooler temps as kids gawk at Christmas decorations that are larger than life (at least to the smaller kids.) Always remember to supervise children under your care, especially outside, because of the darkness and nearby road.
Santa's workshop is easily distinguished in the maze. At the far end of the building Santa sits surrounded by kids, eyes gleaming in amazement, in a big chair covered with red velvet. He wears a bright red coat and matching pants complete with a shiny black belt and gilded buckle, next to a wonderfully decorated Christmas tree.
Normally only a few kids are waiting to sit on Santa's lap, but on the last few days the line may be 15 minutes long. Each child sits on Santa's lap, spends a few moments chatting, and tells the jolly old man what they want the most - the gift Santa is to bring from the North Pole. The folks are welcome to take pictures of their children if they want.
Even if your kids have grown up and left, its a lot of fun to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus at his North Georgia workshop. For families with young children its especially delightful to get the kids into see Santa without having to stand in line at the mall and be subjected to the crass commercialization of Christmas.
You can visit Santa and Ms. Claus at 6951 Vaughn Road, Canton, Georgia, 30188. From Thanksgiving to Christmas Santa visits with the kids on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. On the final week before Christmas Santa takes his place on his red velvet chair every night. Questions? Call Santa's helpers, Ronnie and Betty Page at 770.345.6314.
Bring a warm jacket for each member of your family visiting Santa Claus. Watch kids carefully, especially in Santa's and Mrs. Claus's home. When outside it is best to keep them nearby, especially near the road. With a three-mile radius are a number of local restaurants that serve sit-down meals, or fast food if that's what the kids want.
To visit North Georgia's Santa Claus:
From Atlanta: Take GA 400 north to Exit 7b. This comes out on Holcomb Bridge Road going west. Continue on Holcomb Bridge Road (it becomes Crossville Rd after 1.5 miles) to Crabapple Road (2.7 miles). Turn right (north) on Crabapple and continue for 2.5 miles to Arnold Mill Rd. (Highway 140). Turn left and continue for 7.1 miles to Foster Rd. Turn left. Foster Road dead-ends into Vaughn Road. Turn left. Santa's house is on the right just past Sequoyah Park or get directions from Google maps from your house: