PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB)– Christmas is less than a month away, and Santa and Mrs. Claus will make a special appearance in Bay County ahead of the holiday at the Bay County Parks and Recreation’s “Christmas at Harder’s Park” event taking place on Dec. 11.

Santa and Mrs. Claus will be arriving via helicopter courtesy of the Bay County Sheriff’s Office, and the event will take place at H.G. Harder’s Park located at 8110 John Pitts Rd. in Panama City.

The county has been hosting the event for 15 years, but due to COVID-19 last year, the event had to be cancelled. Parks and Recreation officials are happy the event was able to come back.

“It’s great to be able to have families and kids back in the park for more than just sporting events,” said Travis Barbee, Bay County Parks Division manager.

The event is from 4 to 7 p.m., and will feature pictures with Santa, a candy cane hunt with prizes, a Letters to Santa station, and hot chocolate. The event is completely free and parents are encouraged to bring cameras for pictures with Santa.

“There is lots to do for everyone. Kids will be divided into different groups by age for the candy cane hunt, and we are expecting to spread out 8,000 candy canes throughout the fields,” Barbee said.

The Bay County Library will also hold a mobile story time program during the event.