A very Truck Stop Christmas ……

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Santa Claus came to town on Saturday night, at the Truck Stop and was handing out candy canes to the kids and jell-o shots to the adults.
Santa Claus came to town on Saturday night at the Truck Stop and was handing out candy canes to the kids and jell-o shots to the adults.

A craft fair, a Christmas tree lighting, some complimentary pizza pies and Santa Claus kept the Truck Stop packed to capacity with happy people on Saturday.

The Truck Stop has tried hard to be more than a collection of restaurants, a bar and an ice cream shop since opening more than one year ago, north of the bridge on Ambergris Caye.

truck-stop-santaOn Wednesday and Friday nights, free movies are shown on an outdoors screen beside the lagoon. Fridays are reserved for family movies. Thursdays are now Trivia Night and Sundays are all about the whole roasted pig and a sometimes comically intense corn hole tournament. Once a month there is a hugely popular farmers’ market.

Every night of the week there are gorgeous sunsets on the back-a-da-island dock and always there are places to just sit with friends and shoot the breeze.

In short, Truck Stop has elevated itself from being just another island food and beverage stop to being a community gathering destination.

The first Truck Stop holiday craft fair.
The first Truck Stop holiday craft fair.

That feeling was there with jingle bells on Saturday, starting with the Truck Stop’s first-ever crafts fair. Revenue from the sale of tables went to local non-profits and they were sold out and laden with jewelry, arts & crafts, sewing, baking, ornaments and so much more. So many creative people!

As patrons navigated the crowded aisles, staff from the Truck Stop’s new restaurant A Slice of Haven circulate among the crowd handing out hot and  crisp slices of New Haven-style thin-crust pie. The crew is perfecting the pies and learning the ropes on the new pizza oven that can cook a pie in under two-minutes. The bistro will be open for business this week.img_0942

As darkness fell, the Christmas tree came to life on the countdown of the “voice of the Truck Stop” himself, Adam Feldman. (You can catch his act on Thursdays calling out trivia questions, and I’m told he even sings a clue or two when necessary.)

That was soon followed by the arrival of Santa Claus who worked the crowd like a politician — just shaking hands and kissing babies. He lifted no wallets from patrons’ pockets.

img_0943-1Santa soon settled onto a bench nestled into the vine-like tree “cave”out back. Pretty quickly kids were on to his location and were posing for pictures at $10 a pop for the San Pedro Food Bank  while making their pitch for the good boy and girl toys they’d like to see under the tree on Christmas day. Every child got a candy cane. Every adult — and there were many posing with Santa — got a jell-o shot. Ho. Ho. Ho.

Me, I spent the evening in a Santa hat gluing Polaroid photos into red and green frames.

My first gig as an elf.

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Hasni waits for the next pizza to come flying out of Slice of Haven, where staff is tweaking the dough, toppings, oven temps and times and more to crate the perfect pie.
Hasni Gazali waits for the next pizza to come flying out of Slice of Haven, where staff is tweaking the dough, toppings, oven temps and times and more to create the perfect pies ahead of this week’s opening.
The community gathers at the picnic tables in the Truck Stop courtyard.
The community gathers at the picnic tables in the Truck Stop courtyard.
Adam Feldman MC's the tree lighting and arrival of Santa while Ben Popik deejays the right Christmas tunes before the "open fire."
Adam Feldman MC’s the tree lighting and arrival of Santa while Ben Popik deejays the right Christmas tunes before the “open fire.”
Santa arrives.
Santa arrives.

santa-baby santa-baby1

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Group shot with Santa and his elf.
Group shot with Santa and his elf.

The festivities are over at the Truck Stop but if you want a taste of the holiday spirit you need only walk 100 feet up the road to the Maya House where the display grows bigger and more impressive every year. Here are some photos of the house:

princess

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santa-dog

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3 thoughts on “A very Truck Stop Christmas ……

    Heather Gill said:
    December 12, 2016 at 5:16 am

    Looking at those pics makes me so jealous as we are freezing our tushes off in Calgary at MINUS 35 !! wish I was there. Looks like a fun and festive time.

    Like

    elizabethjewell5 said:
    December 12, 2016 at 6:37 am

    Especially like Santa and the reindog. Belize is looking better and better compared to what’s happening in the USA. Happy Holidays to all!

    Like

    Linda Czestochowski said:
    December 12, 2016 at 8:14 am

    Doesn’t Santa have a Palapa Bar t-shirt and some festive swim trunks?? He must’ve been roasting in his full gear!! Looks like a great tradition has taken root in Belize 🙂

    Like

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