Friday, December 23, 2016

TOP STORY >> An interview with Santa Claus

Leader staff writer

Santa Claus spent a lot of time this month at the Santa Shack at the Walmart Supercenter in Cabot.

It was his 20th year at the shack. Children and adults were able to tell him what they want for Christmas and get their photo with Santa for a $3 donation to Cabot City Beautiful.

Santa said he likes the Santa Shack for many reasons.

“I get to spend time and talk with the children. I get to hear what they want for Christmas while they are waiting for the photo to print. It is convenient for the people of Cabot,” Santa said.

Santa said the most requested toys this year are Xbox video game systems, American Girl dolls, Shopkins and Hatchimals.

“I don’t promise Hatchimals because I’m running out of them,” Santa said.

Some children ask Santa for things other than toys.

“I have some who want their family to get along; their parents to stop fighting and to be happy at home. I had one who wanted their sick grandfather to get better,” Santa said.

Santa has adults visit who never had their picture taken with him before. Some people even bring their dogs and cats.

He has a lot of younger visitors.

“I like babies’ first Christmas the best. I had one that was two days old,” Santa said.

He said some children get scared and cry when they sit on his knee. They like him from a distance, but they get nervous when they get close.

“Some will run right up to you. I never had anyone get sick, but I had one pee on my hands. I always carry an extra set of gloves,” Santa said.

Santa gets asked many questions.

“Kids ask where the reindeer and sleigh are at. What’s my favorite cookie? I like chocolate chip but like any they have,” Santa said.

His favorite meal on Christmas Eve is ham, mashed potatoes, green beans and a slice of pumpkin pie, but not too much because he has to eat a lot of cookies.

Santa hears a lot of Christmas music. His favorite songs are “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and of course “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”

Flying around in a sleigh and eight tiny reindeer might seem problematic with Little Rock Air Force Base and C-130s, but Santa has it figured out.

“I have a special beacon that NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) uses to track me,” Santa said.