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Delaware North locations light up with holiday cheer and giving spirit

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and many of Delaware North’s locations are celebrating with their own versions of holiday cheer, and, more importantly, giving back to their communities.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, which Delaware North operates for NASA, kicked off the holiday season last week with its annual Holidays in Space celebration.

This year’s Holidays in Space features an all-new kinetic light show, which runs continuously each night beginning at 5 p.m. The production features a rainbow of colors and special effects with over 400 lighting fixtures, including a display of 200 LED kinetic spheres. The program runs through Dec. 30 – five days longer than previous years – and is included with daily admission.

Also new this year is a holiday-themed activity area for children in the visitor complex’s Atlantis West Pavilion. Families can enjoy hours of fun, with special activities being offered December 26-30.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex has also decked the halls, with festive décor found throughout its exhibits and attractions. One annual highlight is the transformation of the iconic NASA logo at the visitor complex’s entrance into a giant Christmas ornament.

Hamburg Gaming
Delaware North associates at Hamburg Gaming were in the giving spirit this season as they came together to collect toys, gifts and food items to help families in need throughout the Western New York community. 

The team took part in an “adopt-a-family” program to provide a family of six with holiday presents through the local Salvation Army. Associates picked ornaments with suggested gifts from a Christmas tree to purchase and deliver for the family. Over 120 gifts were collected, including a bike, dolls, clothes, toys and many gift cards.

Hamburg Gaming associates also took first place in a friendly can-stacking competition to collect canned goods for a local food pantry. More than 1,992 canned food items were donated by Hamburg Gaming associates and then built into three Christmas “trees.” The team competed against seven other companies and won “Best Use of Labels.” All the collected food items were donated to the Food Bank of Western New York.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport 
Each year, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport hosts hundreds of first-grade students for a holiday-themed event. The students, along with their teachers, enjoy a program featuring a magic show, puppeteer performance, parade of children’s characters and even a surprise visit from a certain red-clad, bearded gentleman offering gifts.

Delaware North’s team at the airport is a major supporter of the annual event and, with the guidance of Executive Chef Rich Bolton, served boxed breakfasts (pictured at right) for the students. 

Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite
Many families have a beloved holiday tradition – and for the Gendron family, that tradition is participating in Tenaya Lodge’s Gingerbread House Workshop.

The family of four has been crafting gingerbread houses at the Delaware North-owned-and-operated resort for eight years running, beginning when their two children were just preschoolers. As the kids have grown, so have their creations, each year becoming more elaborate and sophisticated.

“I love seeing families return to celebrate the holidays each year and always look forward to helping the Gendrons perfect their house,” said Executive Chef Freddy Clabaugh.

“The Gendrons are a perfect example of how resort traditions, such as the Gingerbread House Workshops, bring families together to create memories that will last a lifetime.”

Tenaya Lodge’s Gingerbread House Workshops take place on select weekends in November and December.

The highly anticipated workshops give families the chance to create marvelous structures out of marshmallows, jellybeans and other sweet treats. They have long been a favorite among Tenaya guests, selling out every year.