Oakland recognized for public relations work

Honored at state level for 'Santa’s Lane Drive Through Christmas.'

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The Town of Oakland was recently recognized at the state level for their public relations work pertaining to the 'Santa's Lane Drive Through Christmas' event.

The popular holiday event allows families to drive through the town and greet Santa and his elves while receiving special gifts from the North Pole.

In 2020 due to COVID-19, the event was re-worked with a new drive-through format that allowed residents to celebrate the holiday cheer without the risk associated with a physical gathering.

The event attracted over 50% more children than the previous year. 

This week, the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) recognized the town with an Award of Distinction at FPRA’s Golden Image Awards which are conducted annually to recognize outstanding public relations programs in Florida.

This years GIA celebrated 63 years and was hosted at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes in Orlando.

The specific Award of Distinction is "presented to entries that meet the standards of excellence set by a panel of judges," according to a press release from the Town of Oakland. 

The entry was also recognized earlier this year on a local level. 

According to the press release, the people honored included Administrative Services and Communications Director and FPRA Lake County Chapter President Elisha Pappacoda, Public Arts and Heritage Coordinator and FPRA Orlando Chapter Image Awards Chair Ashlynn Webb and Event Coordinator/Permit Tech Valerie Gibbons.





Annabelle Sikes

News Editor Annabelle Sikes was born in Boca Raton and moved to Orlando in 2018 to attend the University of Central Florida. She graduated from UCF in May 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in sociology. Her past journalism experiences include serving as a web producer at the Orlando Sentinel, a reporter at The Community Paper, managing editor for NSM Today, digital manager at Centric Magazine and as an intern for the Orlando Weekly.