July 26 (UPI) -- Hundreds of people with long, white beards and dressed in red suits and caps have gathered in Denmark for the annual World Santa Claus Congress.
Santas from around the world have been making the trip to Bakken amusement park north of Copenhagen since 1957 for the four-day event to bring some Christmas cheer to the summer months.
"The World Santa Claus Congress at Bakken is both a professional forum and social meeting place for real Santas from all around the world," the event's website states. "The Santas from around the world have the opportunity to meet and exchange experiences and to network."
Legendary Bakken entertainer Professor Tribini came up with the idea for the midyear celebration because he felt Christmas should happen more than once per year.
Santas, Christmas pixies, elves and spectators from countries that include Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Greenland, Spain, Germany, the United States and Japan will ride roller coasters, swim at the beach and participate in other Santa-themed activities.
The 2017 conference runs from July 24 through July 27 and will feature parades as well as a "Santa Pentathlon" on the final day, Deutsche Welle reported.
Admission to the annual conference is free to participants as long as they perform in full costume, actively participate in parades, arrive on time for Christmas activities and refrain from drinking and smoking while in costume.