Santa to arrive by helicopter at Aviation Museum Dec. 12

LONDONDERRY – Santa Claus is coming to town, and he’s arriving by chopper.

On Dec. 12, the big guy will land via helicopter at the Aviation Museum of New Hampshire, 27 Navigator Road, in Londonderry.

Touchdown is scheduled for 11 a.m. outside the Aviation Museum. The free event is designed to be COVID-19 safe and all are welcome.

Families wishing to see the helicopter land should arrive at the museum no later than 10:45 a.m. to park and then make their way to the landing observation area, where there will be plenty of room to observe social distancing.

After arrival, Santa will occupy a special outdoor throne, where he’ll speak to children and take requests via microphone.

Santa will visit and take requests until 1 p.m., when he’ll depart by fire truck courtesy the Manchester Airport Fire Department, which will whisk him off to his next appearance.

Families are requested to dress appropriately for the outdoor event, which will be held rain or shine.

Hot chocolate will be provided free by the Airport Diner/Common Man restaurants, which will also have a food truck on hand for the event.

Children who speak to Santa will be rewarded with goodie bags given out by Santa’s helpers.

Also, Santa will lead the socially-distant singing of several holiday carols, accompanied by his special tuba-playing elf.

The helicopter arrival is weather permitting, but Santa’s visit will take place as scheduled on Dec. 12 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., rain or shine.

The Aviation Museum has changed this year’s annual visit by Santa to be as safe as possible, following all Covid-19 public health guidelines.

“It wouldn’t be the holidays without Santa coming in by helicopter,” said Jeff Rapsis, executive director of the Aviation Museum of N.H. “So we did our best to rework the event to be Covid-19 compliant, so we could go ahead this year, when we need all the holiday cheer we can get.”

Unlike previous years, Santa’s visit to the Aviation Museum will be held entirely outdoors.

Children will converse with Santa via frequently sanitized microphone; all participants will be expected to wear face coverings and observe social distancing.

Families with children visiting Santa will be asked for contact tracing info, and also get temperature checks.

Santa’s appearance is free and open to the public. The Aviation Museum itself will be open to visitors on Saturday, Dec. 12 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with regular admission prices in effect.

Besides Santa’s arrival, Saturday, Dec. 12 also marks the debut of this year’s “Holiday Festival of Toy Planes and Model Aircraft” inside the museum.

The exhibit, which runs through Sunday, Jan. 24, includes more than 1,000 aviation-related toys, games, and other items that celebrate the enduring childhood fascination with flight.

Santa’s appearance at the Aviation Museum is made possible by generous supporters including Manchester-Boston Regional Airport; CR Helicopters of Nashua; Signature Flight Services; the Airport Diner/Common Man family of restaurants; and Molloy Sound & Video.

The Aviation Museum, a non-profit 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization based in the 1937 art deco passenger terminal at Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, is dedicated to preserving the Granite State’s rich aviation past, and also inspiring today’s students to become the aviation pioneers of tomorrow.

The Aviation Museum is located at 27 Navigator Road, off Harvey Road, in Londonderry, N.H.

For more information, visit www.aviationmuseumofnh.org or call (603) 669-4820. Follow the Aviation Museum on social media at www.facebook.com/nhahs.