BRISTOL – Wojtusik’s Nursery & Garden Center is getting into the Christmas spirit with lots of holiday decorations, a petting zoo, a reindeer train and, of course, an opportunity to visit with Santa Claus. They will also be collecting Toys for Tots to give to needy families.
Those who visit Wojtusik’s Nursery & Garden Center, located at 750 Terryville Ave., between noon and 3 p.m. on Nov. 28 will have the opportunity to visit with four Nigerian Dwarf baby goats from Grazin Goats Farm. Then, on Nov. 29 from noon and to 4 p.m. and Dec. 2 from 2 to 6 p.m., they will have the chance to ride a reindeer train outside at the center and visit with Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus indoors.
On each day, kids can also enjoy free popcorn and stop into the Christmas Shop. The shop will be decorated as a Christmas village with a train set and more than 24 themed trees featuring characters from famous holiday specials.
Cynthia Schug, who is organizing the holiday activities, said that the Christmas shop is “gorgeous” this year.
“We change it up every year and there are a lot of cutout characters to take pictures with,” she said. “We have Charlie Brown, Rudolf, Santa Claus and The Grinch with his dog Max.”
Santa has also been stopping into Wojtusik’s Nursery for more than 10 years. This year is no exception. However, due to covid-19, visitors will be let in one group at a time to maintain social distancing.
“A parking attendant will take you in and then after you’ve disinfected they will escort you up to the area with Santa,” said Schug. “Santa will be sitting behind a Plexiglas divider but you will be able to sit and take pictures next to him.”
The reindeer train, which will be running outside, will be disinfected between each group of children using it.
“We’re very diligent and strict about following the guidelines,” said Schug.
Despite the additional challenges associated with the pandemic, Schug said that families are grateful for the opportunity to have somewhere to go for the holidays. Wojtusik’s Nursery’s Halloween season this year, she said, was a big success.
“We got a good turnout for Halloween; we spread it out over six weeks instead of a three weekend period,” she said. “People seemed to appreciate it; we had a great response. People thanked us for doing it; the kids were excited and there wasn’t much else to do. They said it was nice that things weren’t too crowded. We had people coming from all over the state. We thought it would mostly be Bristol and Terryville but we had people from as far as Durham and Hartford.”
As part of this year’s Christmas Celebrations, Wojtusik’s Nursery & Garden Center will continue to collect Toys for Tots.
“This program meant so much to me that when I came on I asked if we could make it part of our holidays here,” said Schug. “In our first year, we were able to fill up one box with donations. Last year, we filled up seven boxes. Our goal is eight this year. This year, with so many people out of work due to covid and kids stuck at home, it’s very important that we reach that goal. All of the toys we receive will remain in the local area.”
Advance tickets are $5 and are available now. To purchase tickets, either visit Wojtusik’s Nursery & Garden Center or call 860-583-7279.
Limited space is available. Social distancing and masks are required. Hand sanitizer will be provided.
For more information, visit Facebook.com/WojtusikNursery or call 860-583-7279.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.