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13 WTHR Indianapolis | Indianapolis Local News & Weather

Only in Indiana: The Santa Dinner

We figured this was some kind of a theme party.

INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) - This is the time of year for work Christmas parties. A chance for all of us to mingle away from work, even if many of us end up talking about it anyway.

The conversation at this party table, a gathering of men with white beards and women in festive dress, went something like this.

"What is your favorite book?

"Twas the Night Before Christmas... and all through the house not a creature was stirring. Not even a mouse," he continued.

This very interesting party happened recently at Frankies Home Cookin' in Washington Square Mall, an old MCL Cafeteria location.

You can tell these folks are regulars. For Heaven's sakes, their picture is on the wall.

Then came a greeting to the gathering,

"Give me a ho."


"Give me a ho ho."

"Ho ho," came the response.

"Merry Christmas. Ho ho ho ho ho. Welcome everybody."

The greeting seemed a little much.

"I think we should start off with introductions. So everybody knows we have new people with us today and this is the best chance to get together before the season," said the Santa at the head of the table.

We figured this was some kind of a theme party.

"For those of you who don't know, we are at 200 in our group now. No, 300. From Evansville to Fort Wayne. From Merrillville to Louisville."

They certainly seemed friendly.

"Don actually is looking for a suit."

"Actually I just bought one."

"Oh you just bought one?"

"Just bought a new suit and I am ready to go."

"How about boots?"

"Boots. I'm just going to get a cheap pair of boots somewhere. I don't have any boots."

Then, smack dab in the middle of all of this, there is a distraction outside.

"There they are," said a woman, leading three young children into the room.

"Hello! Would you like to come back for a picture mom? Come see us."

Suddenly it all starts to make sense.

"It's an awesome time. If you don't have it in your heart, that is where Santa is."

The kids know it when they see it.

"Be good, because we are watching!"

And it's something they will never forget.

"You saw Santa. You saw all the Santas," the woman told the kids.