Santa Rides Again with Guest, Mrs. Claus

Santa has been visiting the children of Leesburg atop a truck from the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Company (Station #1) for thirty years. Since 1988, the year of Santa’s first surprise trek, children have peered out of windows in their pjs, stood waving from the sidewalks and ridden high on the shoulders of their fathers and mothers for a chance to catch a glimpse of Santa, the mystical bearded guy, on their street atop a shiny red firetruck flashing brightly with sirens full roar. “Santa Rides Again”, as the event came to be called, has become a highly anticipated annual event.

This past Sunday, Santa embarked on his thirtieth year of a week’s worth of nightly rides through the neighborhoods of Leesburg much to the delight of families who check the fire station website for the mapping details. This holiday gift to the citizens of Leesburg from the Fire Company not only spreads christmas cheer, but also is a special thank you for the ongoing support of the community.  After a dozen fire station elves spend about five hours decorating the fire truck with an assortment of lights, the scene is set. Characters, including Frosty, Rudolph and recently the Grinch, join Santa for up to two hours each night on a journey that ultimately reaches an estimated 30,000 plus excited folks of all ages.

A most special guest joined the suited man for this year’s inaugural ride. For the first time in the history of “Santa Rides Again”, he was joined by Mrs. Claus (aka Inside Loudoun’s, Jessie Peterson) who left the elves at the North Pole licking bowls and watching the cookies bake so she could join Santa for a jolly nighttime ride in Leesburg. Mr. and Mrs. Claus rode through town atop Engine #601 with emergency lights flashing, sirens blaring and holiday lights sparkling. For more information about the Santa rides, visit their Facebook page at

The Leesburg Volunteer Fire Company is celebrating 215 years of history this year, a history that began in 1803, in the days when the water for dousing fires required hooking up to hydrants and connecting hoses to hoses to hoses to reach the flames.  “The Lost History of the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Company and the Fire Service in Loudoun” is a book by Captain Jim Fazekas compiled from thousands of pages of historical documentation regarding fire protection services across Loudoun County from 1803 to 1925. Included are fascinating stories of fires like the 1903 fire when a gasoline tank blew and almost wiped out the fire company, rural Loudoun fires, fires through the civil war years and more. For more information, go to

To donate to the Leesburg Volunteer Fire company, visit


Suzanne Peterson

Suzanne began writing while employed on Capitol Hill for a former U.S. senator from Minnesota. Her work has been published by MS Magazine and the online magazine Arts4All, and she has written children’s books that are cherished by her six grandchildren. She has also composed approximately 40 songs for voice and piano.
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