Santa Claus got a jump on his gift list for the elves on Saturday.
"I want records, CDs and tapes," Jack Baumgarten, 4, told Santa during the Holidays in Johnston celebration at Johnston Public Library.
More than 700 people stopped by the library to enjoy crafts, madrigal singers, treats and a visit from Santa Claus.
"It's great," said library director Willona Goers of the event. "I was worried about the weather, but we had a great turnout. It's such a fun community event."
The event, presented in part by the JPL Foundation, Johnston County Community Education, the Women's Social Committee, Hy-Vee, Dahl's, the Johnston High School Madrigal Choir, Summit Middle School Flute Choir, the Johnston Fire Department and Police Department, has a long history in Johnston. The library began hosting the event in 2004.
"It's always the first Saturday in December," Goers said. "So people can mark their calendars now for next year."
The festivities began when Santa arrived aboard a Johnston Fire Department ladder truck. Because of the rainy weather, he opted to ride in the cab.
After being rushed by Johnston's youths, Santa began work taking photos and listening to wish lists.
Yousef Tewfik, 4, asked for Legos and a "Polar Express" train, while little brother Hassan, 3, wanted a fish tank, fish and fish food.
Angela Tewfik said the family comes to the Johnston library frequently.
"We wanted to see Santa on the fire truck," she said. "This was a special occasion."
About 20 gingerbread houses were on display as part of the Holiday in Johnston Gingerbread Competition.
Ella Johnston, 4, was busy surveying the tasty homes on Saturday.
She, her mom, Melissa, and grandparents stopped by the celebration for the crafts.
"This is the fourth year we've come," Melissa said. "We thought it was cute. Ella loves art. She was at storytime this week and they said they would have five projects here, so she was excited. And to come and see Santa."
Mayor Paula Dierenfeld was on hand to light the Christmas tree in Johnston Commons.
"We had a great turnout," Dierenfeld said. "I attribute that to the staff at the library. The reputation of the event preceeds itself. Even with the inclement weather, people were here to welcome the holidays."
The rain and cloudy skies couldn't keep Santa Claus away from the Johnston Public Library on Saturday afternoon.
The annual Holidays in Johnston celebration drew crowds for crafts, holiday music and a chance to see Santa.