Spencer County Visitors BureauUpdated 4/2/19

3Page #Welcome5Resources7Hours9Getting Here11Santa Claus, Indiana - Fact Sheet13-14Lincoln’s Indiana Boyhood Home - Fact Sheet15-16Attractions - Santa Claus17-25Attractions - Lincoln26-30Attractions - Other31-34Shopping35-37Dining38Lodging39-47Local Maps49-51Family Fall-O-Weekends52-53Santa Claus Christmas Celebration54-55(888)

5SantaClausInd.orgSanta Claus is a magical and historical destination!Thousands of letters to Santa pile into this small,charming town annually.IndianasAbeLincoln.orgEver wonder what Abraham Lincoln did as a child?Find out at sites throughout Lincoln’s IndianaBoyhood Home, where Abe spent ages asAbeSantaClausIndIndianasAbe

7The Spencer County Visitors Bureau is here to help you with all of your group’s needs.Below is a list of resources available upon request.Promotional Materials Digital photos of the destination to promote a group tour, available via email or postal mail on a USB Videos to showcase the area Assistance with marketing copy points for printed material pertaining to scheduled toursPre-Scheduled Guide Services A warm welcome when group arrives in the area Step-on guides to educate the tour group about the areaFAM Tour Opportunities Familiarize group tour planners with area attractions during a FAM tour for scheduled overnight trips Tour operator must plan to bring a group to stay at a local accommodation overnight FAM tours require approval by the executive director

9Stop in and see usat the Visitors Bureau!39 North Kringle PlaceSanta Claus, IN 47579Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm CTVisit view current hours of operation for localattractions and dining.Meetings and Group Tour Contact:Alexandra Brooks, Marketing [email protected](888) 444-9252Please Note:Spencer County operates on Central Time

11Getting Here By Motor CoachDriving Distances:Interstate 64 is the major corridor providing access to the region.The Indiana Department of Transportation hotline, (800) 261-7623,provides current road conditions.Owensboro, Ky. - 40 minutesEvansville, Ind. - 1 hourLouisville, Ky. - 1 hour, 20 minutesCincinnati, Ohio - 3 hoursIndianapolis, Ind. - 3 hoursNashville, Tenn. - 3 hoursSt. Louis, Mo. - 3 hoursChicago, Ill. - 6 hoursDetroit, Mich. - 6.5 hoursDriving Tips Right turns are allowed on red, unless posted otherwise Some GPS devices do not recognize Santa Claus street names;refer to maps available at

13LocationSanta Claus, Indiana, is located north of the Ohio River in southern Indiana, approximately seven miles south ofInterstate 64 between Louisville, Kentucky, and Evansville, Indiana.Themed TownThe famous town is home to the world’s only post office with the Santa Claus name. The world’s first theme park is also located inSanta Claus; Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari (originally called Santa Claus Land) opened in 1946. Most of the businesses in SantaClaus have Christmas-themed names such as Santa’s Lodge, Lake Rudolph Campground & RV Resort, the Santa Claus ChristmasStore, Christmas Lake Golf Course, Santa’s TOYS, and Holiday Foods. Many of the establishments display Christmas lights anddecorations year round. Nearly all the streets in Santa Claus are holiday-themed as well: Christmas Boulevard, Candy Cane Lane,and Mistletoe Drive. There are over 20 Santa Claus statues located at various locations throughout the community.PopulationThe town of Santa Claus was incorporated in 1967 with a town board of three members and a clerk-treasurer. The population of thetown at that time was less than 50. Today, this rural community is the home to approximately 2,500 people. During the summermonths, the number of visitors outnumbers the residents many times over.Naming of Santa ClausThe original town of Santa Claus, Indiana, was called Santa Fee. However, upon learning there was already a town in Indiana withthe similar name of Santa Fe, the townspeople had to come up with a new name in order to obtain a post office.According to local legend, it was a cold December night when the townspeople gathered together in a small church to choose a newtown name. A gust of wind blew open the church doors and the sound of sleigh bells could be heard. A child exclaimed that it must beSanta Claus and the townspeople decided the town would be called Santa Claus, Indiana. This name was officially accepted by theUnited States Post Office Department in 1856.Early DevelopmentIn the mid-1930s Attorney Milton Harris coordinated a deal with the Curtiss Candy Company and built a castle-like building for sellingcandy to visitors to the town. He also built a factory where Santa sleighs were built. Several toy companies built small plants in SantaClaus where they manufactured and displayed toys. In 2006, Santa’s Candy Castle was fully restored and re-opened to the publicoffering handmade confections and gourmet hot chocolate.Original Santa StatueBusinessman Carl A. Barrett collected donations and opened a park with a large statue of Santa Claus in 1935. The statue, dedicated“to the children of the world” is 22 feet high. This landmark has a base in the shape of the star of Bethlehem, with its principal pointshowing the way east to the land of the Christmas story. In 2011, the statue was restored to its original condition.39 North Kringle Place P.O. Box 202Santa Claus, IN 47579(888) 444-9252

14World’s First Theme ParkOn August 3, 1946, Evansville industrialist Louis J. Koch opened Santa Claus Land. This was the first theme park built inthe world. (Disneyland opened nine years later.) The original Santa Claus Land included the Santa Claus Land Train, toydisplays, a food and souvenir shop, plus a special place to visit Santa Claus. In 1984, additional holiday-themed sectionswere added including Halloween and Fourth of July and the park was renamed Holiday World. In 1993, Splashin’ Safariwater park was added. has named it the nation’s #1 Water Park. In 2006, the park expanded againadding a fourth holiday section, Thanksgiving. During the summer months, over 1 million guests visit the family parks,which have been repeatedly voted the World’s Friendliest and Cleanest. The park is home to three of the world’s top-ratedwooden roller coasters: The Voyage, The Raven, and The Legend. The park is also home to the world’s longest watercoaster, the Mammoth. In 2015, the parks introduced the nation’s first launched wing roller coaster, Thunderbird.Santa Claus Post OfficeIn 1856, the U.S. Postal Department gave official notice that the community would have a post office. The Santa ClausPost Office is the only post office in the world with Santa’s name. The Post Office offers a holiday picture postmark duringthe month of December that also attracts mail from all over the world. Over 400,000 pieces of mail go through the SantaClaus Post Office during the holidays.Letters to SantaEach year the town receives thousands of letters to Santa from children all over the world. The Santa Claus Museum &Village and a group of local volunteers called "Santa's Elves" answer letters sent to Santa. They make sure each childreceives a reply from Santa Claus; in 2018 approximately 22,000 letters were answered. This tradition has been tracedback as far as the 1920s.Santa Claus Christmas CelebrationExperience traditional holiday events during the first three weekends of December such as Chestnuts Roasting on anOpen Fire at Santa’s Candy Castle and Christmas Dinner with Santa at Santa’s Lodge. Drive through Lake Rudolph’s1.2-mile “Santa Claus Land of Lights” to learn the shining story of Rudolph and browse through the Santa Claus Arts &Crafts Show and shops around town.TodaySanta Claus, Indiana, has wonderful themed attractions and shops that truly bring out the spirit of Christmas.The famed little town offers unique attractions, shopping, and festive lodging. Santa Claus Christmas StoreChristmas Lake Golf Course & Event Center Santa Claus Museum & VillageEvergreen Boutique & Christmas Shop Santa Claus Post OfficeFrosty’s Fun Center Santa’s Candy CastleGingerbread House Santa’s Lakeside CottagesHoliday Guest House Suites Santa’s Lodge & St. Nick’s RestaurantThe Holiday House Santa’s StablesHoliday World & Splashin’ Safari Santa’s TOYSLake Rudolph Campground & RV ResortMistletoe ManorSanta Claus Christmas Store39 North Kringle Place P.O. Box 202Santa Claus, IN 47579(888) 444-9252

15Lincoln in Spencer County, IndianaYears spent in Spencer County: 14 years; from age 7 to 21Year moved to Spencer County: 1816Why move to Spencer County? To own land free of title disputes and the taint of slavery. In Kentucky, Lincoln’s FatherThomas lost land three times due to title flaws.Year Lincolns left Spencer County, Indiana, for Illinois: 1830Lincoln Family Members:Mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln died in 1818 of milk sickness, an illness caused from drinking milk from cows thatconsumed poisonous white snakeroot. Her gravesite can be found in Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City,Indiana.Father, Thomas Lincoln was a farmer and skilled carpenter. You can see a hutch made by Abraham Lincoln with thehelp of his father, Thomas, at the Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum in Rockport, Indiana.Sister, Sarah Lincoln Grigsby died during childbirth in 1828. She is buried at Lincoln State Park in Lincoln City, Indiana,along with her stillborn child and her husband, who passed away several years later.Dennis Hanks is a cousin whose parents also died of milk sickness and who lived with Abraham Lincoln’s family. He laterowned property that is now part of Lincoln Pines Lakeside Resort.Sara Bush Johnston is a widow with three children; she married Abraham Lincoln’s father, Thomas,in 1819 in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, and returned with him to Spencer County, Indiana.Significant Experiences in Lincoln’s Spencer County Life: Lincoln attended log cabin schools, developed a love for reading, and a curiosity for knowledge. Lincoln won his first court case in Rockport, Indiana, while still a teenager. He represented himself in a dispute with alocal ferry boat company. Lincoln would regularly ferry passengers out to meet passing steamboats and he soon gotsued by the local ferry company which said he was infringing on their rights to ferry people across the river. Lincolnwon his case by arguing that he wasn’t taking people across the river he was only going half way.In 1828, Lincoln embarked on a flatboat trip to deliver goods to New Orleans for local general store owner JamesGentry, along with Gentry’s son, Allen. It was in New Orleans where Lincoln witnessed a slave auction, influencing theanti-slavery views he promoted as president. Lincoln Sites in Spencer County:Colonel Jones Home, Gentryville, IndianaThis carefully restored 1834 Federal-design home was the home of the merchant employer of Abraham Lincoln.The home offers a look at the early development of Indiana and the life of Colonel William Jones, who was also apolitician. Appointment required for home tours. Call (812) 937-4710 for more information.39 North Kringle Place P.O. Box 202Santa Claus, IN 47579(888) 444-9252

16Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial, Lincoln City, IndianaLearn about the lives of Abraham Lincoln and his pioneer family, who lived on a farm site that is now a National Park.The story of the Civil War era president's 14 formative years in Indiana springs to life at the Living Historical Farm, insidethe visitor center, throughout the museum, during the film, and along the park's scenic hiking trails. Call (812) 937-4541or visit for more information.Lincoln Ferry Park, Troy, IndianaThis riverfront park is on the historic spot where Abraham Lincoln operated a ferry boat service taking travelers out topassing steamboats. The park features a stone picnic shelter. Located on the Ohio River Scenic Byway near Troy,Indiana.Living Historical Farm, Lincoln City, IndianaThe Living Historical Farm is located on the grounds of the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City, Indiana,and is a working pioneer homestead with a cabin, outbuildings, split rail fences, animals, gardens, and field crops.From April through September, rangers in period clothing perform a variety of activities typical of the 1820s.Call (812) 937-4541 or visit for more information.Lincoln Landing, Rockport, IndianaThe riverfront under the bluff in Rockport, Indiana, is rich with history and includes the site where Abraham Lincolnlaunched a flatboat to transport produce to New Orleans for a local merchant in 1828.Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum, Rockport, IndianaThe Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum houses hundreds of fascinating artifacts from the area’s historic past, includinga hutch made by Abraham Lincoln with the help of his father, Thomas. Take a relaxing look back into history with 13Lincoln-era replica cabins. This site was originally a W.P.A. project. Call (812) 649-9147 or visit LincolnPioneerVillage.comfor more information.Lincoln State Park, Lincoln City, IndianaThis scenic park was established in 1932 as a memorial to Abraham Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks. Facilities includeLake Lincoln, paddle boat rental, nature center, cabins, picnic areas, trails, and camp sites. It also includes the AbrahamLincoln Bicentennial Plaza, identifying key milestones in Lincoln’s life in Indiana. For reservations, call (812) 937-4710 or(866) 622-6746, or visit River Scenic Byway, Rockport, Grandview & Troy, IndianaTake a beautiful drive through the southern portion of Spencer County following the picturesque Ohio River through rivertowns, colorful wooded areas, and vast farmlands. Learn about the history of the area through Ohio River Scenic Byway