Santa’s coming Ho Ho Home to Croke Park

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All-star children are invited to join Santa and his elite team of Elves at their training camp at Croke Park for a traditional Santa Experience, writes Shauna McCrudden

Participants Lauren O’Brien, age 5, Katie May O’Brien, age 6, and Alexander Bellintani, age 8, with Santa during a Santa Experience at Croke Park in Dublin. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

With Christmas just around the corner, girls and boys will be delighted to hear that Santa’s coming ho ho home to the GAA Museum and Croke Park from November 27th! This Santa Experience is one Christmas ‘goal’ not to be missed!

On the Croke Park Santa Experience, all visitors are VIPs as they get a fascinating look behind the ‘winter wonderland’ scenes. Your family will have the opportunity to get a pitchside ‘Elfie’ in the magnificent grounds. You can see where the Elves tog out in their Christmas training gear at the Elf Dressing Room. You will also have time to ‘chill’ out in the Igloo Clubhouse. Here you can test your own hurling, camogie and football skills in the North Pole Skills Zone. An All-Star Elf will even check your skills scorecard and will share some insider knowledge on treats to leave out on Christmas eve for Santa and his reindeer. 

After all this festive fun, it will be time to finally take the much-anticipated ‘hurl’ into Santa’s very special Croke Park Cabin to meet the Bainisteoir of Christmas himself. Here, every child will receive a small GAA-themed gift and photos will also be available to purchase if they wish.

Santa Experience Check-In area during a Santa Experience at Croke Park in Dublin. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

The Santa Experience also includes free admission to the newly refurbished GAA Museum, which gives a unique insight into the history of GAA in Ireland. Here, visitors can see the original Sam Maguire and Liam MacCarthy cups. Younger visitors can also pick up their Junior Explorer passports and follow a specially-designed children’s route through the museum.

After working up an appetite, finish off the perfect day with light refreshments and a festive snack in the museum’s Blackthorn Café. And before you leave, you can even pick up a stocking filler reminder of your big day in the GAA Museum Gift Shop!

Santa will arrive at Croke Park on Saturday, November 27th and the Santa Experience will run on selected dates until Thursday, December 23rd. The experience is run in groups, lasts for one hour, and is wheelchair and buggy accessible. Free parking is available outside the GAA Museum with entry to Croke Park at St Joseph’s Avenue (turn at the Daybreak Shop on the Clonliffe Road).

All tickets must be pre-booked online in advance and children must be accompanied by an adult. So what are you waiting for? Book your ticket for a magical countdown to Christmas.

Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Tickets prices are:

– Adults: €11

– Children aged 2 upwards: €17 (including gift)

– Children aged 13 months – 23 months: €9 (including gift)

– Children Under 1: Free-of-charge and gift included, but the ticket must be booked

The GAA Museum has signed up to the Fáilte Ireland Covid Safety charter and strictly adheres to all government guidelines. For dates, tour times and booking, see www.crokepark.ie/santa

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Shauna McCrudden

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