Six-year-old Annabelle Marino of Williamstown jumped with excitement Saturday in front of Rowdy and Nutmeg, two reindeer.
She had never seen reindeer. They were “cool,” she said, and extended a hand to pet, hoping one would walk by.
The reindeer, from Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, were part of Greek Peak Mountain Resort’s Christmas Extravaganza weekend. Beginning Friday evening, weekend events included writing letters to Santa, Christmas tree lighting, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, Christmas carols and other activities.
“It’s a nice event and gets everyone into the holiday spirit,” said Drew Broderick, vice president of sales and marketing for the resort on Route 392 in Virgil.
The event started last year but was just for hotel guests, Broderick said. This year it opened up to non-guests. Also added this year were local vendors selling handmade items, including paintings, wood works, candles and more.
“I think we have to be mindful year-round to support our local community businesses and we try to do that with events we have when possible,” Broderick said.
Sam Batschelet of Binghamton was staying at the hotel for the weekend with his wife, Sarah, and their two kids, both under 6, Logan and Toby.
“It’s just nice for the Binghamton area to have some place to come out and not have to travel far with the kids. Even though we don’t have the snow for skiing and stuff, it’s still nice to get out,” he said.
Their sons especially liked the reindeer.
“Obviously, anything tied to Santa is fun. They might be shy to say it but they thought it was pretty cool that Santa’s reindeer might be here,” he said.
Had the two boys ever seen reindeer before?
There are “not too many reindeer in Binghamton,” Batschelet said.