Dr. Suess’ estate puts an end to Sacket’s Whooville in the Harbor

Published: Sep. 9, 2022 at 5:30 PM EDT
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SACKETS HARBOR, New York (WWNY) - A Christmas tradition in Sackets Harbor has been ordered to end.

A lawyer for the Dr. Seuss estate slapped the village with a cease and desist letter, putting an end to its Whooville in the Harbor tradition.

Whoville is the town in Dr. Seuss’ 1957 book “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!”

The annual holiday event had been held in Sackets for several years and included people dressing up as the Grinch and the Whos. The village was told to stop using Dr. Seuss properties.

“We were disappointed to hear from Dr. Seuss’ estate that they didn’t want us to do it anymore,” said Mayor Alex Morgia.

In place of Whooville in the Harbor, Sackets will now become Wonderland in the Harbor.

The village is using that theme since “Alice in Wonderland” has been in the public domain for decades.

“We’re going to bring all of the magic, creativity, interacting games and family time at Whooville. It’s going to be at Wonderland in the Harbor,” said Tracey Blair, event co-chair.

The Grinch’s absence just leaves more room for his longtime enemy St. Nick.

“Fingers crossed. If everyone is good, he will be making a comeback for you to come visit. He will be at the North Pole Connection,” said Blair.

Despite the shakeup, the Sackets Harbor Chamber of Commerce has high hopes for what it calls its “signature event.”

“It draws thousands of visitors in, in the past, with Whooville. We expect the same thing this year with Wonderland. We’re excited and think the public is going to enjoy it and love it. We’re just proud to be able to put this on,” said Cheryl Payne, chamber president.

The theme isn’t the only thing that’s changing. According to the mayor, the event is being pushed to a little bit earlier in the year.

“It was sunny but very cold. A lot of people had to hide indoors and warm up. Come back out shop by shop. We’re putting it on before Thanksgiving this year. A little bit earlier with hopefully better weather,” said Morgia.

You can catch Alice, the Mad Hatter, and the Cheshire Cat in Sackets on November 19 and 20.