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12/01/13 3:27pm
See below for more photos from Katharine Schroeder.

See below for more photos from Katharine Schroeder.

The Riverhead Lions Club held its annual Christmas parade on Sunday in downtown Riverhead. Hundreds of people lined Main Street as the marchers made their way from Osborn Avenue to the Peconic riverfront.

Riverhead VFW members, local scout troops and the Riverhead High School band led the way, followed by dozens of firetrucks, local dignitaries and, of course, Santa Clause with Mrs. Claus.

Following tradition, Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter presented Santa with a key to Riverhead.

The key allows Santa Christmas Eve access to houses without fireplaces.

12/13/12 4:31pm
12/13/2012 4:31 PM
TIM GANNON PHOTO | Santa made a stop in Town Hall on Thursday.

TIM GANNON PHOTO | Santa made a stop in Town Hall on Thursday.

The Riverhead Town Board got a special visit from a man in a big red suit Thursday.

But it wasn’t expected.

And the gifts Santa handed to board members took them by surprise.

“Santa’s here!” Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter exclaimed when a man dressed in a Santa suit came waltzing into Thursday’s work session in Town Hall. He presented each board member with a small present, which they each opened and presumed to be dark chocolate and a candy cane.

“I’m a little worried about this,” Mr. Walter said, opening the package. “It’s chocolate,” he then said. “Dark chocolate.”

“Dark chocolate is good for you,” Councilman John Dunleavy said.

Then one of them tasted it.

“This is not dark chocolate; this is coal,” Councilman Jim Wooten said. “I thought it looked kind of weird and it hurt my teeth.”

By that time, Santa had scurried out of Town Hall.

Officials insist they’re not sure who the man in the Santa suit was.

Either that — or they’re just not saying.

For the record, each board member got a piece of coal and a candy cane. Santa said the gifts were for being “naughty and nice.” He didn’t elaborate.

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