Santa Claus opens workshop in Flagstaff for North Pole Experience


by Ryan O'Donnell

Bio | Email | Follow: @3TVODonnell

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 10:20 AM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 20 at 12:39 PM

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FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- You won't have to travel to the North Pole to visit Santa Claus and his elves; they're now a lot closer to the Valley. One week from Friday, the North Pole Experience, Santa's Workshop in Flagstaff, will open its doors for hundreds of families from Arizona and around the world.

The place to meet is at the Little America Hotel in Flagstaff, a well-known hotel near the Interstate 40 that's decked out in millions of lights. Families will climb aboard their elf-driven trolley and ride through the magic portal to Santa's workshop. All along the way, Christmas music rings, lights flash and the magic begins.

Inside the workshop they'll have an interactive experience making toys with Santa’s elves, snowman soup and cookies inside Santa's bakery, class time inside Elf University, Santa's top-secret ‘Area 47’ Sleigh Hanger, which features his famous sleigh and rocks some of the most advanced technology in the world, including runway lights and radar systems.

You can visit Santa’s main Toy Factory Floor, with its soaring ceilings and toy slides, Santa's Toy Development Laboratory, which is where Santa creates and designs all the new toys for boys and girls around the world, and enjoy special one-on-one family time with Santa, complete with family photos.

The experience is topped off with a trolley ride back to Little America, ending the evening with storytelling and cookies and milk with Mrs. Claus.

The North Pole Experience season starts the day after Thanksgiving and runs through Dec. 27, 2012.

Single adult workshop tickets cost $55. Tickets for children 18 months and older are $49.

All tickets for the North Pole Experience and meals can be purchased online at or call 480-779-9679. Santa and his

Drive time to Flagstaff from Phoenix is about two hours.