Copyright 2011 The Downtown Auburn Business Association All Rights Reserved
The Downtown Auburn Business Association along with Allen Graber of Graber Homes of Auburn, had the idea to build a house for Santa Claus in 1970. Prior to that time Santa used to greet children in the courthouse rotunda and it was felt at the time that Auburn needed a separate facility to greet visitors. Santa's Chalet was built by Vic Miller, who worked for Graber Homes and the lumber used was donated by Broadview Lumber. The keys were presented Santa Claus the day after Thanksgiving in 1970 and the chalet was placed on the northwest corner of the courthouse lawn facing the intersection of Main & 7th Streets.
Over the years the Chalet's location changed several times...but one thing remained constant...once people saw the building being delivered...they knew the Holidays were fast approaching and the excitement from the kids only further noted the importance of the building as it welcomed many visitors for their annual visit to Santa Claus.
The elements took their toll on the building over the years...and repairs were completed on a per need basis...as funds allowed.. The roof was replaced in 2000 by DeKalb High School's Building Trades Class. In 2002, Auburn Street Department employees Richard Toy and Jim Pfefferkorn headed up a project to make further repairs. With steel donated by Vulcraft, a permanent frame was built around the base of the chalet...to address a warping floor and doors that no longer shut or locked. A new sign, donated by Classic City Signs, donated carpet by Roth Floor Coverings, and electrical upgrades, were also completed that year.
In 2008, DABA made plans to address the remaining repairs needed. Funds were allocated following a successful summer art project, and Jennings & Sons Construction were hired to complete the renovations which included new outside siding and insulation, new inside walls, new insulated doors and windows, new carpet, and fresh paint inside and out.
Please make plans to visit the newly remodeled Santa's Chalet in it's new home in Courtyard Park. Bring the kids to visit Santa & Mrs. Claus...along with their reindeer "Jingles" and "Jangles". Santa's schedule will be posted here...as well as at the Chalet during the upcoming Holiday Season.
Kenny Jennings & Justin Oberlin from Jennings & Sons Construction performed all the renovations to the Chalet. October 2009.