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by Kara Faulk

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Have your kids been waiting all year to sit on Santa's lap? It's finally the holiday season and now is the time to take your kids to meet Santa. Lucky for parents, there are many options to meet Santa all around Manhattan. We've put together the top 10 places to meet Santa in Manhattan this December.

santa hat

Have your kids been waiting all year to sit on Santa's lap? It's finally the holiday season and now is the time to take your kids to meet Santa. Lucky for parents, there are many options to meet Santa all around Manhattan. We've put together the top 10 places to meet Santa in Manhattan this December.

1. Short lines and free ornaments at ABC Carpet & Home

Find Santa in NYC’s Union Square at 888 Broadway, between 18th and 19th Streets. Free admission and the shortest Santa line in town, for now. ABC Christmas ornaments given to lucky visitors. Santa will be available for photographs on Saturdays 10am-3pm, and on Sundays 11am-3pm. Bring your own camera and have your wish lists ready. For more information, visit abchome.com.

2. Save the date for Santa in Central Park on December 2

Santa is coming to the Charles A. Dana Discovery Center in Central Park on 110th Street, between Lenox and Fifth Avenues. He will only be here for one day, making a  special pit stop for Central Parks’ annual lighting on Dec. 2, so don’t forget. Admission is free. Santa will be present from 4:30 to 5:30pm, and photos may be taken at this time. Holiday caroling, cookies, and crafts may also be enjoyed by families as well.

3. Macy’s Santaland includes a puppet show and elves

On the 8th floor of Macy’s department store on 34th Street, between Broadway and Seventh Avenue, Santa is available for photos. Admission is free, and photo packages are available for purchase for $19-50. A holiday puppet show, Miracle on 34th Street, will be given on the 9th floor, and admission is $5. Santaland will be open daily Nov. 25-Dec. 24. Weekday hours are 9am-9pm, and weekend hours are 8am-9pm. For more information, call 212-494-4495.

4. Classic Bloomingdale’s Santaland

On the 8th floor of Bloomingdale’s at 1000 Third Ave. (at 59th Street), your child may visit Santa. Photo packages are available and range $21-45. Santa will be at Bloomie’s from Nov. 24-Dec. 23, 11am-6pm on weekdays and 10am-6pm on weekends. For more information, visit bloomingdales.com.

5. Unconventional Santa at Ripley’s Believe It or Not

Located at 234 W. 42nd St., Santa will be present every Saturday Dec. 1-22, from 12-7pm. In true Ripley’s fashion, this Santa sighting will be very unique, taking a different angle than any other Santa visit. Tickets are $32.61 for adults and $24.99 for children ages 4-12. Ripley’s promises not to disappoint with this unconventional holiday stop. For more information, or to purchase discount tickets, visit ripleysnewyork.com.

6. Santa's Winter Garden in the World Financial Center

Santa will be ready for photos in Battery Park City at 220 Vesey St. from Dec. 7-9, and he is bringing his elves and reindeer with him. Photo packages will be available for $15-20. All proceeds from this sighting go to New York Theatre Ballet. This is an NYC holiday favorite. For more information, visit worldfinancialcenter.com.

7. Save the date for Santa at NYC Fire Museum on December 9

Located at 278 Spring St., the NYC Fire Museum will be hosting Santa himself on Dec. 9 at 11am. Admission is $10 for adults and $2 for children. This Santa visit will be unlike any other that you see this holiday season. Santa finds himself stuck on the roof and the firefighters of New York must save him. After Santa is rescued, celebratory hot dogs and hot chocolate will be served, and the big man in red will be available for photographs and Christmas wish lists, while John Clacher’s Firehouse Band will provide the entertainment. For more information or to purchase tickets in advance, visit nycfiremuseum.org.

8. Professional Photos with PhotoOp

To have your child’s visit with Santa captured professionally, you should swing by PhotoOp Photography at one of their locations. At 442 Columbus Ave. and 1475 Third Ave., Santa is in two places at once. Holiday cards are available for purchase, as well as photo packages. For more information, visit photoopnyc.com or call 212-362-1911.

9. Rockefeller Center’s Breakfast with Santa

This annual breakfast, held at Rock Center Café, is worth the holiday splurge. Tickets are $47 for adults and $42 for kids. Santa and his elves enjoy breakfast with guests, sending kids home with holiday gifts. Skating sessions will also be held at the Rockefeller Center Ice Skating Rink. This event is held on weekends through Dec. 24, and reservations may be made. For more information or to reserve your spot, visit therinkatrockcenter.com.

10. Santa at The Plaza Hotel Dining Hall

New for 2012! For the first time ever, Kris Kringle is making an appearance at New York’s renowned Plaza Hotel. Santa may be found on the Concourse Level of The Plaza Food Hall Friday, Nov. 23 through Dec. 9, Wednesday through Sunday 10am-7pm (6pm on Sundays) and from Dec. 10-24, 10am-7pm daily. Photos start at $29.

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