CHIÈVRES, Belgium -- The Brussels community kicked off the holiday season Dec. 1 with Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation's Winter Wonderland Extravaganza. "Everybody come together just to make the event great and just to celebrate the holidays," said David Coldwell, MWR business and recreation division chief.

Families gathered in the 3 Star Recreation Center to celebrate Christmas with food, decorations, crafts, music and, of course, Santa Claus.

The long-awaited moment of the evening was the arrival of Santa in a military police sedan. Children were ready to tell him what they want for Christmas. One of the girls said she would love to have a pony. Other children didn't know yet or were too shy to talk with Santa, but everybody got a candy cane at the end.

The purpose of the event was to give the community a little bit of America in Belgium. According to Coldwell, the Brussels community is a family. "We come together and work together as partners to make things happen," Coldwell concluded.