ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ - Members of the Atlantic Highlands First Aid & Safety Squad will assist Santa in travelling through the streets of borough the week of Dec. 3, 2012.

Weather permitting from Dec. 3 through Dec. 6, AHFAS elves will help Santa visit a part of town each night from 6 PM to 9 PM, where he’ll chat with children and family, hand out candy canes, and collect donations of food to be delivered to the Atlantic Highlands Food Pantry.

“Preparations for Santa’s visit have been underway for months,” says AHFAS chief Tom Hayden. “This is a great way to kick off the holiday season in Atlantic Highlands.”

This year, as the squad has done for the past several years, the AHFAS is asking residents for donations of non-perishable food items for the Atlantic Highlands Food Pantry.

“Hurricane Sandy has put a strain on area resources,” says Hayden. “Our goal is to use the Santa visits as a way to help restock the shelves at the food pantry, which is a vital community resource.”

Once again, Santa will participate in social media during his travels.  Children – and their parents – can follow the AHFAS squad on social media to find out where he is and communicate with his elves for a sense of when he might be visiting their neighborhood. A night-by-night map will be posted at  www.ahfirstaid.com. Santa’s elves will update his position each night via Twitter (www.Twitter.com/ahfirstaid) and Facebook. (www.facebook.com/ahfirstaid).

“We got a great response to Santa’s social media efforts last year,” says Hayden. “This year, we’ll post pictures along the way as well as real-time location information.”

The AHFAS is an all-volunteer emergency medical and rescue services organization serving the borough of Atlantic Highlands and occasionally the surrounding areas.  The squad operates on donations from the borough and the community. For information call the AHFAS non-emergency number (732) 291-8118 or log onto www.ahfirstaid.org, Twitter or Facebook.