PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - Before Santa arrives, his mother elves set the scene.
"We love just roaming the streets and talking to the kids and handing out candy and having our pictures taken with them," said Anita Giani.
She began the Mother Elf program in 2010 as escorts to Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Now, there are about 10 who help brighten up Christmas in the Pass.
"We are so tired at the end of the night, but there's a smile that's frozen on our faces," Anita said. "Because that's all we've done all night is just smile."
Santa's arrival at War Memorial Park Friday evening was just the beginning of the 31st annual celebration.
Voices rang out at the opening ceremony, and continued onto Davis Avenue for the street fair. There, more music filled the air as the crowd strolled down the street and included in their fun with a little shopping on the side.
It's an event that creates life-long memories.
"I can remember coming in high school," said Jenny Levens, director of the Pass Christian Chamber of Commerce. "It's an amazing event and it really ... the town looks forward to it every year and the business always look forward to this event."
Barbara and John Fuller of Mendenhall last came four years ago, but it made a lasting impression.
"This is the spirit of Christmas," Barbara Fuller said. "It's really wonderful. Everyone coming together. The young girls singing. And it's just the whole spirit of Christmas."
Colin Gahagan of Pass Christian is originally from Arizona. It is his first Christmas in the Pass.
"It's a lot more small town environment. Lot more community driven," Colin said. "People know everybody, and it's just a lot more friendly."
Holly Wiggins is visiting from her home in Washington, D.C.
"This event is much more intimate," Holly said. "And, I'm having the ability to get a closer view to kind of see the cross section of people and how it's touching their lives."