Local church giving parents a night off from kids during Christmas season

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Reverend Frank Ruffatto, the pastor at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Charleston knows how stressful the holiday season can be on a parent.

That’s why he and others with the church created an evening of fun and games for children while parents have a night to themselves, called Santa’s Rest Stop.

It’s the second year for the event, which will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday. Santa’s Rest Stop invites parents and caregivers to drop off children for Christmas-themed activities allowing the adults the opportunity to complete errands or holiday shopping.

“They can leave their kids for a little bit in good supervision and they can go Christmas shopping or even go on a date night,” Ruffatto said.

Ruffatto described the evening as “a week of vacation bible school in one night.” Children allowed to be dropped off are ages 3 through 6th grade, and they will be organized into age-appropriate groups. The groups will play games, learn songs, and create crafts.

“My kids are older now but I know when I was younger and working and doing all the stuff that young families do, sometimes it is hard for mom and dad to get that together time. We want to encourage that,” Ruffatto said.

All activities are free, but pre-registration is requested by the church.

Parents may register their children at f3wv.org or by navigating to redeemerwv.org. On-site registration will end at approximately 7:30 p.m. Children must be picked up by 9 p.m at the Deerwalk Lane location.