As a patient in any hospital would attest, it can be most difficult this time of year to turn that frown upside down.

That wasn't the case for patients at Blue Mountain Health System's Palmerton campus on Tuesday, after they received a visit by Santa Claus to brighten their spirits.

Santa's visit was once again sponsored by members of the Palmerton United Veterans Organization, which is comprised of Legion Post 269 and VFW Post 7134.

Much to their delight, each patient received a Christmas bag with a piece of candy, an orange, cookies, a Christmas tree ornament, a folded flag ornament, and a Christmas card.

Upon the receipt of his goody bag, patient Frank Solderich, of Palmerton, said, "Thank you, Santa Claus."

"It was surprising to see Santa Claus," Solderich said. "I'm glad to see them."

Patient Denise Geiss of Marshalls Creek, was all giddy once Santa entered her room.

"I think it's wonderful; especially when you're not feeling well," Geiss said. "It makes you feel well."

Ed Moyer, commander of the Palmerton American Legion Post 269, said 36 bags were prepared.

"It always feels good," Moyer said. "Just to give a smile to some of these patients' faces."

The legion is always in search of new members. It meets the fourth Tuesday of each month.

Those who would like to join may call 610-826-7475, or 570-325-9657.