More than a hundred children from Los Angeles were given the chance to "fly" to the North Pole Wednesday morning in a Delta plane transformed into a holiday winter wonderland.
Delta Airlines and Los Angeles World Airports brought the magic of Christmas a bit early for the 150 kids, who were told they were flying to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus during their 8th annual "Holiday in the Hangar" event.
The children don't actually take off in the plane, but Delta Airlines does its best to bring the spirit of Christmas to life at Los Angeles Fire Department Station 80 at LAX, which was complete with faux snow and a red carpet.
"We cool the cabin down as we get closer to the North Pole, so the kids really get into it," said John Buxton, Delta Airlines pilot.
U.S. & World
Upon "landing," the children were greeted by actors Kylee Russell, Joshua Rush, Lakers alum A.C. Green, LA Football Club forward Christian Ramirez, the Coca-Cola Bear and others.
"We do our take-off checklist over the intercom and kids get a kick out of that. We rev the engines up, the plane shakes. They think it's great," Buxton said.
The children were treated to a holiday party complete with ball hockey with the LA Kings, basketball with AC Green, and paper plane making with pilots and flight attendants.
"I liked the plane ride," said Leandro Flores, 13. Leandro Flores is waiting for a kidney transplant and undergoes dialysis several times a week. His mother says it takes a toll.
"Sad and tired, stressed and upset because he can't play like the other kids," said Nicolasa Gonzalez, Leandro's mother.
The children were treated to a variety of holiday activities: a drumming circle led by The Grammy Museum, a photo booth by the Recording Academy, and snack and lunch courtesy of Sprinkles Cupcakes and Westfield. Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus and elves also distributed gift bags courtesy of Hasbro and other Delta partners.