Interview with SantaPublished 11:52am Friday, December 20, 2013
OTW: Santa, you are all over the place for a couple weeks leading up to Christmas. How do you get all of your work done?
Santa: I have a big staff — lots of elves, and a lot of good people working in the communities, believe it or not. We get a lot of support from a lot of people, and they all do it very quietly. It’s wonderful, how much support!
OTW: And, does Mrs. Claus ever complain that you’re gone so much at this time of year?
Santa: Mrs. Claus does notice that I’m gone a lot. Today is one of those days.
OTW: I bet she’s got a lot to do right now.
Santa: She does. She’s pretty much the manager.
OTW: Ok, so she is your right hand…
Santa: She is the main hand, believe me.
OTW: We’re getting a lot of snow here in South Bend here today. Would you say there’s more snow here or up at the North Pole?
Santa: Oh, this is just a sprinkle. This is just a sprinkle.
OTW: So, you’re good with the snow. You know how to handle it. It’s in your blood.
Santa: I think so. It is. I love snow!
OTW: Compared to years past, how have the kids been this year?
Santa: Good. Nice, nice kids. And do you know what? I’m so proud of the parents because it all goes back to the parents, just being good models for the kids, and being disciplinarians. Kids really want structure, and it’s wonderful to see these kids. I’m so proud of them.
OTW: So, the majority of kids will be getting presents this year?
Santa: The majority, yes. I don’t know how we’re going to fill all the quotas. Yes, lots of kids, lots of presents.
OTW: Is there a specific present that a lot of kids are asking for this year? One that you’re hearing a lot about?
Santa: Yes. I’m trying to think of the name of the bracelet. I was presented one by a young man. It’s a loom.
OTW: The rainbow loom?
Santa: The rainbow loom. Yes! That seems to be a big item. And of course, the Barbies and the Barbie house. That’s always popular. And, hmmm, what else? The little guys like Thomas the Tank Engine. That’s very special. I could just go on and on. There are so many new things.
OTW: There’s always something new, isn’t there?
Santa: Yes, always. It’s just amazing.
OTW: How do the elves keep up with all of the new things that are coming out every year?
Santa: You know, I don’t want to say that we have spies in the industry, but it sure helps! There are a lot of people who are just magic. And there is a lot of magic. I think you have to know that magic is involved. Magic is involved.
OTW: You’re going to be here next weekend, too, aren’t you?
Santa: Yes, I will be back next weekend. Friday night: 5 to 9 p.m., Saturday: 12 to 6 p.m. and Sunday: 12 to 4 p.m.
OTW: When you do that, do you stay down here in South Bend, or do you jet back to the North Pole every night?
Santa: We stay here. We have good support back home.
OTW: Do the elves or Mrs. Claus ever give you any presents?
Santa: Their presents are very good work and lots of love.
OTW: And love really is one of the most important presents anybody could get.
Santa: It is for me.
OTW: Do you give each of them presents at Christmas, too?
Santa: Yes, each one of them is an individual and has special wants and needs, and we try to fill them, and boy there are a lot of different things we do. But, yes, that’s what we do!
OTW: And Santa, I know you’re very busy at this time of year, and I won’t take up any more of your time, but is there anything you’d like to say to the folks out there as Christmas comes up?
Santa: It’s got to be peace.
OTW: Is that your Christmas wish this year?
Santa: Yes. Peace. One boy, he was about 13 or 14, I asked him, “How about you, bud? What would you like?” And he said, “Well, I’d like peace, and I’d like my family together.”
OTW: And that would make for a Merry Christmas.
Santa: Yes, for him. And for me, too.