This time of year it's common to see a wreath or Christmas tree at your local city hall. But there's one Tri-State town where the city offices are transformed with the holiday spirit each year.
From santas to snowmen, you'd never know a winter wonderland like this normally houses city council meetings in Clarksville, Missouri during most of the year. It's called Santa Land, established eight years ago to address a need for child-friendly holiday activities in the small artisan community. Click here to watch more from KHQA This Morning.
Clarksville Mayor Jo Anne Smiley began decorating with pieces from her personal collection.
"People began bringing in things - special things," Smiley said. "Sometimes as a loan and sometimes as a gift."
Since then it's exploded into three rooms, filled with more than 400 Santas, and hundreds of snowmen and other characters. As you can imagine it takes a small army and three weeks to create. Click here to see the city's emergency management area transformed on KHQA This Morning.
"It's not a one man show," Smiley said. "It takes a lot of people, time and energy."
Visitors will notice all the tiny details. Each tree is decorated with a theme or special color. For example, there are elf, candy and cardinal trees.
"It is something that I hope when the door opens, it will draw you in and take you back to a different time," Smiley said.
Though the display changes every year, one thing has not. Santa still meets and greets his public every weekend from his original chair. Click here for pictures of the visits.
Click here to hear how this venture is helping the economy in the Clarksville community.
Santa Land is free and open to the public all week during regular city hall business hours.
Santa holds court Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 6p.m. Click here for additional days and hours from the city of Clarksville.
Click here to see visitor information on the local shops and businesses from Clarksville, Missouri.