Slightly choppy seas can’t deter deter annual visit of Santa Claus in Port Townsend

PORT TOWNSEND — Despite having to take a substitute boat, Santa Claus arrived right on time Saturday night to the relief of hundreds of children waiting for him on Union Wharf.

“The trip was terrific,” Santa said. “There was a little bit of chop, but we pulled right up to the dock because I was steering.”

Ariana Dose, 5, was one of the hundreds of children anxiously waiting to see Santa as he arrived on Aldebaran, a commercial fishing boat piloted by Capt. Brad Jensen and a crews of elves.

Decorated with Christmas lights, the ship was visible as it made its way slowly across the bay.

“I wish he’d take a motorboat,” said Ariana Dose, 5, as she sat from atop her uncle’s shoulders. “He’d get here faster.”

Ariana and her sisters Natasha, 12, and LIly, 2, live in Fort Bragg, Calif., but came over from Sequim with their grandmother, Jeanne Alderson.

Also visiting Alderson are her sons Jeff, who lives in Germany, and Jason, the children’s father.

“We’ve never seen him come in a boat before,” Jason Dose said.

Santa did have some trouble climbing the ladder up the side of wharf, then had to swing himself over the rail.

But once on solid ground, he greeted children and invited them to come see him later at the Jefferson County Historical Museum. Then he slowly made his way down the wharf to the carriage, where he greeted Mayor Catharine Robinson and rode with her to Haller Fountain.

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