Santa shows some of the vintage toys on Dec. 18 that children who have grown up now still hold on to. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa shows some of the vintage toys on Dec. 18 that children who have grown up now still hold on to. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa Claus is coming to town!

Despite a difficult year, the guy in red is still headed to Haida Gwaii

The week leading up to Dec. 24, Christmas Eve, is a very busy time for Santa Claus, but because he knows the children of Prince Rupert are so special he took time out of his day to let The Haida Gwaii Observer peak into his workshop where he was making toys.

Santa Claus, in some other countries, is known by different names. In England he is Father Christmas and comes down the chimney leaving gifts in stocking by the fireplace – similar to in Canada.

In the U.S.A. he is known as Kris Kringle. It is the custom to leave him milk and cookies to keep him energized because he has lots of presents to deliver.

“Cookies and milk are good. Chocolate milk too. I like any type of cookies,” Santa said. “And carrots for the reindeer, who are vegetarian.”

Santa said that he is very busy on Christmas Eve. It takes all night to deliver gifts around the world.

“As soon as it gets dark I head out from the North Pole and before the sun comes up I’m done. My sleigh doesn’t need snow. It’s magic. The reindeer pull it and it goes over snow, rock, or sand, it doesn’t matter. I’ve even taken it to Hawaii.”

Santa’s favorite present as a little boy was an electric-train. Mrs. Claus’ favourite present was a family of dolls with mama, daughter and baby, she said when she brought cookies and mile into the interview.

When Santa was asked about COVID affecting the elves and workshop he said he didn’t want to talk about it because it made him sad. But, he said Dr. Bonnie Henry did tell children in British Columbia that Santa is immune to COVID, so he doesn’t need to wear a mask.

“I feel really bad that I couldn’t have the children sit on my knee at all the functions this year. It’s been a tough year for me,” he said with a tear in his eye. “I miss seeing the smiling faces and all of the enthusiasm for Christmas,” he said.

The usually jolly guy said that he really missed being able to wave to everyone in the parades this year.

“It’s the children that make Christmas for me. They are usually all pretty good,” he said.

Santa said he wants kids to know that things are still ok this year even though they are a bit different. The sparkle and glitter makes him feel so happy. He loves to see Christmas lights on houses as he flies overhead.

“Wear your mask when you are told to and wash your hands,” the red-suited large elf said. “Every year you have to be good. Listen to your mom and dad – most of the time. Be happy and be kind to each other.”

Santa said for everyone who hasn’t sent a letter yet he really wants to see them. If one is written and left for him he will read it.

“If you leave me a letter on Christmas Eve, I will read it and make sure you are left with something nice,” he said.

After Christmas Santa and Mrs. Claus take a vacation to Hawaii or Cuba. In Cuba he is called Papa Noel, he said.

“I take my hat with me and I have shorts that Mrs. Claus made for me. They have white fur trim around the legs,” Santa said. “I just love them. They are my favourite. I love wearing them with flip flops.”

One year when Santa went to Hawaii he said he went to a luau, a special dinner feast, and he was the most popular guy there. Even though he’s on holiday and people treat him like a rock star he says he still knows who is naughty and nice.

“I have to make it special for people even when I am not on the job,” he said.

“Everyone should believe and not stop believing because Christmas magic is always around.”

His final words just before we left his workshop was, “Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas.”


K-J Millar | Journalist
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Santa Claus has been busy in his workshop and is looking forward to delivering presents on Christmas Eve. He said he is watching and knows who is naughty and nice - even when he is not on the job. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa Claus has been busy in his workshop and is looking forward to delivering presents on Christmas Eve. He said he is watching and knows who is naughty and nice - even when he is not on the job. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa was busy in his workshop on Dec. 18, making toys the week before Christmas. He said with COVID-19 he misses the children a lot. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa was busy in his workshop on Dec. 18, making toys the week before Christmas. He said with COVID-19 he misses the children a lot. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa concentrates hard when making ‘just the right’ toy for a child. He leaves his works shop just as it gets dark in the North Pole to deliver on Christmas Eve. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)

Santa concentrates hard when making ‘just the right’ toy for a child. He leaves his works shop just as it gets dark in the North Pole to deliver on Christmas Eve. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)