What was once envisioned as a winter wonderland in the desert, Santa Claus, Ariz. is now a dust bowl of a ghost town.
Faded red and white wooden buildings with brick chimneys sit in disrepair. A sign indicating the office of Santa’s Land is weathered, the word ‘Office’ nearly completely blocked out. The little pink train that choo-choo’d little kids around the park grounds has sat idle among weeds and graffiti for decades.
California real estate developer Nina Talbot and her husband founded Santa Claus in 1937 “with the hopes of turning the desolate wasteland into a place where families could settle and live the suburban dream,” according to the Daily Mail.
The Talbots purposely set out to create North Pole-themed buildings and build a Santa Claus Land to attract families with children, with the idea that people wanted to live in Christmastown year-round.
By 1949, however, the Talbots sold the land, after no investors joined in their holly-jolly gamble.
The town, located about 90 miles south of Las Vegas in the Mojave Desert, did briefly become popular as a tacky tourist attraction, but after the 1970s, Santa Claus let itself go.
- The 5 worst things you could do for your roof
- 6 coolest things brewing in Arizona
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever
- Gameday recipes and beers to match
- 6 reasons the Cardinals are driven to win the Super Bowl
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.