NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It was an extraordinary day for a group of students in the Bronx Wednesday, as they took the trip of a lifetime to the North Pole – if only in their imaginations.

As CBS2’s Vanessa Murdock reported, 150 students from P.S. 154 in the Bronx found it hard to contain their excitement at John F. Kennedy International Airport. They were holding plane tickets to the North Pole, thanks to Delta Airlines and the YMCA of Greater New York.

They grabbed their seats on a 767.

“I felt like it almost was my first time, and how my stomach started hurting,” said student Isai Gugman.

Butterflies seemed normal, for after all, it was a first flight for many.

“It was really exciting to be on the plane,” one boy said.

“That flight was so exciting that I just really want to scream right now,” another said before proceeding to scream.

The plane taxied on the tarmac for 30 minutes, before “landing” inside a hangar that stood in for the North Pole.

“When we got here, it was awesome,” said student Abdul Gialio.

So what exactly does “awesome” entail? How about high-fives from beloved mascot Mrs. Met, waves from Yankees infielder Martin Prado, and big smiles from Mets pitcher Victor Black – along with face-painting, sweets, fun and games.

It was a day filled with joy, intended to build a brighter future for the kids.

But no trip to the North Pole would be complete without meeting the big man himself.

“I’m still waiting to meet Santa,” one girl said.

CBS2’s cameras couldn’t catch Santa, but the kids got a sneak peek of him before they got back on the plane went home. They’ll now be waiting for his Christmas Eve night delivery just about three weeks away.

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