Christmas in July

Christmas in the summer?! And in July..the hottest time of the year across America. It's an unofficial holiday that many people enjoy simply because its an opportunity to imitate the actual festivities of Christmas. It signifies our yearning for happy times and positive thoughts. Perhaps that's why our friends at Inland Empire Ronald McDonald House threw a big bash on July 16th.

Santa aka Lorrin Montag Sr. & June Bug Mel

Under a blazing hot California sun, a steady stream of vintage cars, motorcycles, Disney characters and Santa Claus arrived to hand out presents, smiles and hugs. The American Spirit team was invited to participate as it's newly formed group The Princess Spirit.

Seven professional women from the region volunteered their time and talent to dress as some of America's most recognizable princesses. Through the generous work of Harlequin Costume Rental in Ontario, CA owner Kristie Peters created beautiful costumes for the event.

For the next few hours parents, children, and siblings working through medical issues at Loma Linda University Medical Center & Children's Hospital had a chance to forget whatever they were dealing with. There was laughter, smiles, icy snow cones to counter the hot weather and most of all an atmosphere of caring. One new mom enjoyed a break from NICU where her newborn child weighed just over one pound. Another parent pushed her child in a wheelchair to ask Santa and Mrs. Clause for a new lunchpail while others gathered to snap photos with the princesses. American Legion Post members presented a check for $5,000 to Ronald McDonald House for families in need.

Helping one another during difficult times, that's what we call The American Spirit.

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