Holiday Bonfire brings annual cheer to downtown Riverhead

12/04/2016 10:24 AM |

The riverfront parking lot was set ablaze with holiday cheer Saturday as the Riverhead Business Improvement District hosted its annual holiday bonfire.

Switching things up a bit this year, Santa showed up in a horse-drawn carriage instead of his usual arrival by boat. Families drank hot chocolate passed out by local girl scouts while children posed for photos inside Santa’s gingerbread house.

The fun continues Sunday with the Santa Parade down Main Street at 1 p.m.

The American flag flies at the Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The American flag flies at the Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

A man tosses another log into the fire. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

A man tosses another log into the fire. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

A young girl poses for a photo in front of Santa’s Gingerbread House . (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

A young girl poses for a photo in front of Santa’s Gingerbread House . (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Maldonado family posing for a photo with gingerbread man cutout (taking photo: Christina Maldonado, posing: Jairon and children Julianna, Llayron, and Victoria) (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Maldonado family posing for a photo with gingerbread man cutout (taking photo: Christina Maldonado, posing: Jairon and children Julianna, Llayron, and Victoria) (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School Crew Team raising money with a holiday bake sale . (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School Crew Team raising money with a holiday bake sale . (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Local girl scouts distributing hot cocoa compliments of Riverhead BID. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Local girl scouts distributing hot cocoa compliments of Riverhead BID. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa is played by Tom Fox of Mattituck – he has been volunteering as Santa for over 30 years with various organizations including Riverhead BID and Riverhead Recreation. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa is played by Tom Fox of Mattituck – he has been volunteering as Santa for over 30 years with various organizations including Riverhead BID and Riverhead Recreation. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa arrives at the Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa arrives at the Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Melissa Muller of the Riverhead Recreation Department. Melissa took photos of every visit with Santa to be posted on the Riverhead Recreation Department’s website. Riverhead Rec also built the Gingerbread House. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Melissa Muller of the Riverhead Recreation Department. Melissa took photos of every visit with Santa to be posted on the Riverhead Recreation Department’s website. Riverhead Rec also built the Gingerbread House. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Gilliam Brothers in matching Christmas outfits – they were the first family to visit with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Gilliam Brothers in matching Christmas outfits – they were the first family to visit with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Vanessa Denoon of Riverhead. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Vanessa Denoon of Riverhead. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Natalie Tucci of Riverhead. Natalie tugged Santa’s beard to check if it was real. It is! (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Santa and Natalie Tucci of Riverhead. Natalie tugged Santa’s beard to check if it was real. It is! (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Event organizer and Executive Director of the Riverhead BID, Diane Tucci, posing for a photo with daughter Natalie Tucci, John Golden and Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Event organizer and Executive Director of the Riverhead BID, Diane Tucci, posing for a photo with daughter Natalie Tucci, John Golden and Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Bella decides what to ask Santa for Christmas – she chose video games. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Bella decides what to ask Santa for Christmas – she chose video games. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Local children pose for a group shot with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

Local children pose for a group shot with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Boese family of Riverhead poses for a group shot with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Boese family of Riverhead poses for a group shot with Santa. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District's Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)

The Riverhead Business Improvement District’s Holiday Bonfire Saturday evening. (Credit: Elizabeth Wagner)e

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