HOUSTON – Christmas came early for hundreds of deserving Houston children this past Sunday at The Ensemble Theatre.
Now in its 18th year, “Santa at the Ensemble” is The Ensemble Theatr
e's signature community service event which benefits Houston-area youth who would not otherwise have a Christmas celebration.
Over 300 children from Peck, Crespo, Best and Alexander Elementary schools were chosen to participate in the event which brings a bit of holiday cheer to children from underserved communities.
But not to be mistaken for just a community toy giveaway, the children who participated in "Santa at the Ensemble" were treated to several brain stimulating activities hosted by generous community partners throughout the day’s event. The day's activities included ornament making activities with Beverly Broussard, C-STEM "Polymers, Polymer, and Polymers!" by Dr. Reagan Flowers, and The Health Museum taught the children about Organs & Anatomy/Infections & Immunity--there was even a human brain on hand for the children to see. There was also a Lego Creation Station by TechnipFMC, and volunteers from Schlumberger exposed the children to all the different careers in engineering with its book, "Who Wants to be an Engineer?" Volunteers from Amegy Bank, TechnipFMC, Iron Women, and The Ensemble Guild were on hand to work with the children and helped usher them to and from each workspace they participated in.
There was story time, and the children also were treated to a live Ensemble Theatre performance —giving some their first exposure to the theater. Catch The Moment photos captured each child's picture with Santa, and they each left with copy in hand. Other sponsors for this year's “Santa at The Ensemble” included: H-E-B, Port City Chapter of the Links, Alpha Kappa Alpha Ivy Educational and Charitable Foundation of Houston, Inc., and Deanna Gathe and Friends.
Earlier in the day, before the children entered the room, Renee Logans, one of The Ensemble Theatre's Board Members and one of the hosts of Sunday's event spoke to the crowd of 150 plus volunteers on goals of the day's event.
"In here, it's all about the kids. It's all about spreading the joy for them," Logans said.
From the smiles on the children's faces, and the laughter that filled the room, it's safe to say the mission was accomplished.
"This is really what Christmas is about," Logans said.