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Children handcraft Christmas cheer

12/15/2013

By MATTHEW KENWRIGHT

mkenwright@dailynews.net

Santa Claus will find at least 35 creative Christmas stockings in the area after the Hays Public Library hosted its annual stocking decorating program Friday.

Preschool-aged children to middle school students attended the event and squirted puff paint on their holiday stockings. Snowmen, names, hearts, shapes, squiggles and messages were styled on the stockings in vibrant colors.

"It's a good way to get the kids to show some creativity and let their imagination run," library assistant Shante Korbe said.

The library gives people free opportunities to forge memories.

"It brings everyone together, especially some families who don't have the supplies or the money to get all these fun activities for their kids," Korbe said. "And it really gives the kids something good to do, something to bring them together with other kids as well."

Amy Church, Hays, said two of her children, 5-year-old Alyssa and 4-year-old Aydan, attended the program. The family has come every holiday season for four years because the library offers a variety of family activities.

"It's tradition now that we come eat breakfast with Santa, and we do the crafts that go along the breakfast," Church said.

The children will hang their stockings on the family's Christmas tree.

Hannah Page, a first-grader at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School, said the freedom to paint whatever she wanted was her favorite part of the event. Her new stocking will hang on her dresser, and she hopes Santa fills it with candy canes, a Barbie Doll and her other favorite toys.

The library has more events for families to celebrate the season. Letters to Santa can be dropped off until Thursday in a mailbox by the elevator in the Children's Department, and he will answer.

There will be a holiday party at 4 p.m. Thursday and Christmas card crafting at 4 p.m. Friday.