- The big guy with the presents makes a stop at Santa Fest.
Ann Jacobs can't remember how many years she's been planning the menu for Santa Fest, a breakfast-and-visit-with-the-Big-Man combo at Mapleside Farms. All she knows is that 300 kids look forward to their day with Ol' Saint Nick every December.
The morning starts with a spread of eggs, bacon, sausage, and French-toast sticks, which Santa gleefully digs into. Once he wipes the crumbs from his beard, he poses for pics under a 30-foot Christmas tree. "Santa [gives out] balloons and presents," says Jacobs, the banquet manager at Mapleside Farms. After all that, kids head outside for hayrides and go to the Apple House for cookie-decorating, ornament-making, and face-painting. All the while, parents reminisce, Jacobs says. "They came here when they were little, and now they're bringing their kids." Seatings for Santa Fest are at 8, 9, and 10 a.m. on Saturdays through December 20 at Mapleside Farms, 294 Pearl Road in Brunswick. Tickets are $10. Call 330-225-5577 for more information. -- Cris Glaser
Little ones make like elves Saturday at Valley Art's Holiday Workshop for Children. They can try their tiny hands at a dozen projects, including candle-making and silk-screening. It runs noon to 3 p.m. at the Valley Art Center (155 Bell Street in Chagrin Falls). Admission is $35; call 440-247-7507. -- Michael Gallucci
Circle of Life
Sunday's Holiday CircleFest features more than 20 University Circle institutions -- including the Children's Museum, HealthSpace, and the Museum of Natural History -- offering free music, food, and seasonal displays, as well as their usual exhibits. It's all free, taking place 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday at University Circle. Call 216-707-5033 for more info. -- Michael Gallucci