“…just a smile away from Whoville with a hint of It’s a Wonderful Life.”
—Huffington Post
Sinterklaas Send-Off Celebration, Kingston, New York
Sinterklaas Festival Day, Rhinebeck, New York

‘Yes, Virginia … there is a Sinterklaas’

River Chronicle Editorial, December 2014

It’s understood, of course, that the opinions shared on this page are not agreed upon with all who read what we’ve got to say week-to-week.

But it’s safe to assume, maybe, that this week’s declaration might fall into the category of a statement that everyone will agree with universally.

And that would be the Sinterklaas organizers and the participants – including the thousands of community members who donned raincoats and clutched umbrellas in order to be there this year – deserve resounding kudos for putting on an awesome and amazing seasonal event for all to enjoy.

For those of us who missed it, there are plenty of photographs in this week’s issue documenting the festivities.

Beyond totally enveloping the community in the spirit of the season, Sinterklaas should be lauded and celebrated for also serving as an example that in this modern world —where often slick marketing creates an anticipation that falls flat with disappointment upon the delivery of an event, a thing, a performance — that true authenticity still exists.

Through months and months of preparation, dogged dedication and original creation, as
opposed to hyping a mirage of doing so, Sinterklaas is so totally unique in its authenticity. One might say the fantastical and mythical theme of the day-long festival is the “real deal” in what it promises and what it delivers.

Children made their own whimsical crowns and accoutrements. Costumes of the various characters are handmade. Everything about Sinterklaas is so rugged in its originality; down to the hand-painted and constructed signs that announce the coming festivities in the Village of Rhinebeck.

How many things are there really nowadays, outside of personal moments with family and friends, that simultaneously instigate goose bumps, put a smile on your face and maybe bring a slight sentimental tear to the eye?

Think about it….those really are the ingredients for a special holiday season moment.

So, thank you, to the organizers for another outstanding Sinterklaas. As stated above, without a doubt, we’re not the only ones singing your praises for gifting this amazing event to the community, once again.