Getting To Know Father Christmas

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Visit Santa at Roosevelt Field Mall anytime until Christmas Eve, when he takes off with his reindeer friends to deliver gifts around the world. (Photo courtesy of Cherry Hill Programs)

With Christmas just a few days away, Santa and his elves are getting ready to deliver gifts to children around the globe. Ol’ Saint Nick was kind enough to take some time out of his busy holiday schedule to tell us a little bit about what it’s like being the North Pole’s head honcho and bringing smiles to millions around the world.

What’s the best part about being Santa?

Everything. Everyone loves Santa, and Santa loves everybody else too. It’s a win-win situation.

A lot of people trust you to grant their wishes. That’s a lot of power.

I try to give everybody what they want. The biggest thing they want is happiness and the joy of the season. That’s the most important thing, the magic of Christmas.

What’s the most popular gift request you’ve gotten over the years?

Most of the little kids just want presents. Pretty much, tried and true, the little girls want dolls and boys want trucks. Older kids are looking for an Xbox and video games.

What about from the adults?

They want a million dollars. Or a winning ticket to the lottery.

Have you ever gotten any unusual requests?

One little boy, his mother was pregnant and he said he wanted a little brother. I said I’d see what I could do.

How do you determine who ends up on the naughty or nice list? Are there requirements?

This is a secret, but I don’t have a naughty list. Parents tell their children there’s a naughty list but all children are good. I love them all. All children are a little naughty, but overall, children are good.

A lot of people hope for snow on Christmas, but does that make your job more difficult?

No, it makes it better. The sled goes faster on the snow, even in the air.

Any special request for cookies?

Most homes put out cookies and milk and I like them all. Chocolate chip, oatmeal, Oreos. I like all cookies.

What do you do on December 26? How about the rest of the year?

Take a long winter’s nap and rest up for next year. There’s a lot of toys to be made and a lot of rest. After all, I’m getting up there a little ways. I’m not a young boy anymore.

What’s the North Pole like?

It’s cold and it’s home. It’s a wonderful place to be.

Do you have a favorite reindeer?

They’re all my favorites. They’re all good and all have their special quirks. I love them all the same.

There have been a lot of movies made about you. Do you have one in particular you think best represents you?

I like the original Miracle on 34th Street. That’s the best one to me. It’s the most truthful and honest. It really pulls at my heartstrings.

Do you have a special message for the kids before you see them in a few days?

Do what your mom and dad tell you to. Be good and I’ll see you on Christmas night. And I love you all.

Santa will be taking pictures with good boys and girls and taking last-minute wishes at Roosevelt Field Mall through Dec. 24. For more information and hours, visit www.simon.com/mall/roosevelt-field/stores/where-is-santa.

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