Santa Claus, always one for an entrance, arrived by special North Pole helicopter to Puopolo Park in the North End / Waterfront. This holiday tradition brought out Mayor Thomas M. Menino, State Rep. Aaron Michlewitz, Councilor Sal LaMattina along with hundreds of residents and visitors. Hosted by the Nazzaro Community Center, North End Against Drugs and the Mayor’s Office of Special Events, the arrival of Santa Claus marked the beginning of the 41st North End Christmas Parade held on Decembrer 11, 2011. The Saint Alfio’s Band and Boston Fireman’s Band were also on hand to entertain the crowd on a chilly but sunny afternoon. (Click on thumbnails to enlarge and start slideshow.)

View photos from the parade here.

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