Sunday, December 23, 2012

An Interview with the Real Mr. & Mrs. Santa A. Claus

By Christina Georgiou

The real Mr. and Mrs. Santa A. Claus, who reside in Easton, Pennsylvania.
Most people believe that Santa Claus lives with his wife at the North Pole. But the much loved giver of gifts has a number of official helpers, many of who bear his name, and  one of them, along with his wife Dolores Claus, recently moved to Easton.

Despite the fact that this is the busiest time of year for Mr. and Mrs. Santa A. Claus, they were kind enough to grant The Easton Eccentric an interview while they were at Elaine Zelker's photography studio on Northampton Street this past week. We aimed to get the answers to some questions we imagine a lot of people have always wanted to ask the guy in red.

Mr. and Mrs. Claus, thanks so much for taking the time to meet with us today. The Easton Eccentric really appreciates it, and we think our readers will too!
Rumor has it that in addition to your home at the North Pole, you also have a residence in Easton. Is this true? How did you end up in Easton?

Santa A. Claus: We had been living in Susquehanna County. We moved to the Lehigh Valley in 2009 for better quality medical care. We'd been looking for a senior high rise, senior housing. We moved to Neston Heights earlier this year, in February. We figure we'll be in Easton for the rest of our lives.
I was born in Catasaqua...I didn't realize how much goes on here, that there's so much happening in Easton. I'd really like to get involed with the city.

Do you ever tire of eating all those cookies people leave for you on Christmas eve?
SAC: Nah.
Dolores Claus: Him? No, definitely not!
SAC: And kids bring them to me too, when they come to visit me...

How do your deliver presents to children that live in houses with no chimneys?
SAC: That's easy. I can get into anybody's house. I'm the greatest cat burgler in the world! St. Nicholas--he was a real person, a Greek bishop, living in what is now Turkey, you know--he used to use ladders. He'd use a ladder at night and crawl through people's windows!

What's the deal with the "Elf on a Shelf"? Is he really one of Santa Claus' elves? Or is he just a toy?
SAC: He's unaffiliated. But him and I talk all the time. He keeps track of all the other elves for me.

What's the most common thing children ask you to bring them for Christmas?
SAC: IPods and iPhones. Even at five years old. Cell phones--it's unbelieveable, even at three and four years old. I can't believe how much they want electronic stuff.
DC: XBox360. That's the other one.
SAC: When we were kids, we were outside all the time. Today, people are so uptight. The elves tell me I'm old fashioned. (Mr. Claus' cellphone rings. Christmas bells are the ringtone. He silences it.) I don't believe in the kids having cell phones and having iPods. They're for adults.

What's the most amazing or astounding thing a child has asked you for for Christmas?
SAC: Everything is unbelievable. The most amazing thing is when children ask for (people that have died) to be brought back. Or when children that are very sick or terminally ill ask to get well.
But there are things that I've been asked for that are just astounding too. I once had a 9-year-old ask for Santa Claus to stop at his house first and open a gift of a case of whiskey. I explained that Santa doesn't drink alcohol. But he insisted. He wanted Santa to drink it and pass out, so he could keep all the presents. He ended up on the "smart" list for having the ingenuity to think of it.

Do naughty children really just get coal?
SAC: No. Coal's too expensive. I've got lots of reindeer doodoo. I always tell kids, "Smell your stocking before your put your hand in it." If it smells bad, please don't put your hand in it.

Is a reindeer and sleigh still used to deliver all the gifts? Or has Santa Claus adopted a more modern conveyance these days?
SAC: For every day, I have a car and a van. But the sleigh still works. The reindeer need God's permission to fly. They fly on Christmas eve and Christmas only.
Training the reindeer takes a lot of time and effort. One of the best reindeer I ever had was named Dasher. He would allow children to sit on his back and be petted. No matter where I walked, Dasher would walk along the fence and follow me. I miss him.

Mrs. Claus, what's your role in all of this?
DC: I'm usually the silent one who usually takes care of things at home.
SAC: Mrs. Claus has been travelling with me lately because the kids that are scared of me like her. She helps a lot. Making little ones comfortable just takes a little bit of patience. A lot of parents are in a rush--"Tell Santa what you want for Christmas. Hurry up!" Give the kid a break!
That's why we don't do the malls anymore. I really like it here (at Elaine Zelker's studio). We can take our time. It's laid back.

Even with flying reindeer, managing to deliver all those presents to everyone everywhere seems an impossible task. How do you achieve that?
SAC: A lot of people ask me that. It does seem impossible doesn't it? But I'm very smart. I start at the very beginning of nightfall on Christmas eve, in the first place it happens. Then I work my way south to north and back to south, while the Earth turns under me. So my night is endless, and I have plenty of time. The world turns for me.

What's the hardest thing about being Santa A. Claus?
SAC: I have a hell of a time trying to make reservations. They think it's a joke and hang up!

What do you want most for Christmas?
SAC: Christmas is about the birth of Jesus. If there was no Jesus...there'd be no Christmas holiday season.
I want every child to be happy. That's all I want. And every adult to be happy too. I don't want to see one frown in the world. Oh, and I want to be the oldest living Santa Claus alive...

What do you do on Dec. 26?
SAC: Basically, we sleep!

I don't blame you! Thanks so much again for your time. Have a very merry Christmas!
SAC & DC: A merry Christmas to everyone!

For more about the Real Mr. and Mrs. Santa A. Claus, visit

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