While Sun Country Airlines is known for transporting Minnesotans down south to destinations out of the cold during the winter season, the airline conducted a special flight to an even colder destination than Minneapolis, the North Pole. Onboard the special wintry charter flight were over 150 passengers consisting of children in the Make-A-Wish Minnesota program and their families, all making the journey to meet Santa Claus.
Arriving at Minneapolis’ Humphrey Terminal, the passengers checking in for the flight as they would any other. The flight was the last Sun Country flight to depart out of the terminal for the night, so the attendees had the whole Sun Country section of the terminal to themselves, with the TSA even opening a dedicated checkpoint just for the event.
Gate H7 would serve as our departure gate where snacks, holiday-themed activities and even a visit from the Country Bear kept everybody entertained until boarding. The aircraft that would take us to the North Pole was none other than N861AM, Sun Country’s first fully-owned and newly-painted Boeing 737-800 complete with a new interior.
The flight to the North Pole would be the aircraft’s first and its passengers the first to fly on the aircraft though I doubt any of them were taking notice since they were off to the North Pole. Although having recently been retrofitted with Sun Country’s now low-cost interior, the cabin was touched up even further with holiday decorations, as any North Pole transport would be.
After an on-time departure, our journey to the North Pole began. First, we needed to taxi over to the de-icing stand where we would get sprayed with “magic jet fuel” to help expedite our journey up north. Once that was complete, we were instructed to put the window shades down so the magic fuel could take effect, shortening the flight time from Minneapolis to the North Pole to less than 10-minutes.
Miraculously, we had arrived at the North Pole. We stepped off of the plane and into Santa’s Workshop with the big man himself there to great us. Inside the winter wonderland, there were plenty of festivities to keep everybody company, from coloring to games and even photos with Santa. Sun Country even sent ahead gifts for the children that included airport playsets and miniature Country Bears.
The festivities, along with a complement of hot chocolate and cookies, kept the evening going for a few hours until it was time to head back to Minneapolis. Although we needed to take a flight to get there, returning home was a simple as walking through Santa’s magic portal, only good for one way travel from the North Pole.
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