Not quite 4 years old, Chloe Pergrem is young enough to still believe in Santa Claus and his magic flying reindeer.
So when she was introduced to two of the hoofed sleigh-pullers Saturday in Elgin, she was understandably impressed.
"The reindeer look cool," Chloe, of Elgin, said after meeting reindeer named Cupid and Comet in a temporary pen set up in a downtown parking lot.
The meet-the-reindeer display was just one of the winter-themed attractions in Elgin on Saturday. People could go ice skating for free at the Elgin Civic Plaza, try roasted chestnuts at the Elgin Tower Building, purchases wreaths and snacks from Boy Scouts and enjoy other Christmas-themed activities.
The reindeer belong to Wisconsin resident Steve Dart and his family. Steve and his mom, Bernadine, were dressed in red-and-green elf outfits as they introduced kids and adults alike to the 300-pound beasts.
"I love it," Bernadine Dart said. "Just to see the joy on the kids' faces, and to have them still believe -- it's wonderful."
After meeting the reindeer, Chloe Pergrem had an important question for her parents, Jaime and Kris.
"Where is Santa?" Chloe asked earnestly.
"The North Pole," someone said.
Let her believe at least a little while longer.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.