Santa’s Annual Point Dume Christmas Eve Ride Will Honor Memory of Judge John Merrick
BY SUZANNE GULDIMANN
For more than 60 years on Christmas Eve, Santa Claus has paused from very his busy sched?ule to stop on Point Dume and visit with children, young and old, to share in the magic and wonder of the season.
“It is with great pride that we continue the tradition of the Point Dume Santa Sleigh Ride this year in tribute to the late Honorable Judge John Merrick,” an announcement for the event states.
“We wanted to honor the judge,” event organizer and coordinator Kirby Kotler told the Malibu Surfside News.
Malibu lifeguards Bob Burnside and Jack Campbell began the tradition in 1948. Judge Merrick, who died earlier this year, was an enthusiastic supporter of the parade for many years.
The Kotler, Rondell, and Smith families have once again volunteered to keep the tradition alive and help coordinate Santa's visit, assisted this year by the Higginbotham family.
The parade begins on Cliffside Drive at 5 p.m. Official Santa Stops are located at Grasswood Ave., Dume Drive (two stops), Bluewater Road, Birdview Avenue, Sea Lion Place, Fernhill Drive, Grayfox Street, Wildlife Road (three stops), Zumirez Drive, Heath?ercliff Road, and Wan?dermere Road (twice).
Residents and friends are asked to congregate at designated and marked “Santa Stops” along the route.
“For everyone’s safety, Santa can only stop at the designated stops. If you cannot make your way to one of the designated stops, please wave and sing a noel as we drive by,” Kirby Kot?ler writes.
“Even mythical beings must follow fire regulations, and that Santa’s “sleigh must make a U-turn before stopping on streets that end in a cul de sac, like Wandermere and Grayfox.
Santa is asking that residents remember to slow down and watch for small children and other pedestrians. Organizers add that wherever possible it would help to limit street parking in front of and across from the official “Santa Stops.”
Point Dume drivers are reminded to use extra caution on Christmas Eve, watch for children, and have patience with any traffic generated by the parade.
A detailed map of the stops is located at: http://tinyurl.com/ptdumesantasleigh For information: 310-600-1106