One hundred years ago, Christmas promised to be a bonanza for the businesspeople of Launceston.
With the War and influenza epidemic behind them, Mr LS Bruce, the manager of the Northern Tourist Bureau was doing his best to manage the expected influx of tourists from the mainland.
The Rotomahana was to run an extra trip from Melbourne in the week before Christmas.
There were fears it would not be enough to cater for the many bowlers planning to visit Launceston for the Australasian carnival and others escaping poor weather conditions on the mainland.
With all accommodation places in Launceston fully booked and facilities for dealing with the extra traffic finalised, Mr Bruce was ready for a busy season.
Then the shipping engineers went on strike, threatening the best tourist season yet.
The bowling carnival was cancelled and some visitors already in the state who could not risk being marooned left on the last two trips of the Loongana. However, Tasmanians who could not reach the mainland for their holidays booked out the hotels, averting a disaster.
The shops enjoyed a brisk trade with a large assortment of attractive goods and toys on display. It appears that people heeded the advice to "shop early" and one businessman found it difficult to understand where all the money was coming from.
Ludbrook's 'The Beehive' department store capitalised on two recent visits of aeroplanes to Launceston and made the extraordinary announcement that Santa Claus was landing in a plane outside their store in Brisbane Street at 4pm on December 19.
Hundreds of eager children turned up to see Santa sitting in a replica plane in Ludbrook's window taking orders for Christmas.
Drizzling rain on Christmas Eve kept people indoors, but Christmas Day was ideal with an almost cloudless sky.
Locals took advantage of the holiday period and there was an exodus from the city. A constant procession of motorboats headed down the Tamar River and crowds attended a picnic race meeting at Danbury Park.
There were the usual entertainments in the city too, with band concerts and the screening of a first-class program at an open-air picture show in City Park.
The Salvation Army band and St John's Church choristers entertained patients and staff at the General Hospital on Christmas Day.
Launceston City Mission and the Benevolent Society distributed toys, food and clothing to the needy using money from The Examiner's Empty Stocking Fund.
Christmas in Launceston in 1919 turned out prosperous and fun-filled after all.