When the children ask me, “Do you make all the toys?” I reply “NO, of course not. I am much too OLD a Spirit for all that work. My Elves make the toys.” Then I ask them if they know the names of my Elves? Well, there is Matt Tel, he’s my oldest Elf. He’s been with me the longest. And then there’s Has Bro. He’s the boss of the Elves. I like to call him “my little bro.” Then there are the twins Fisher & Price Elf. They’re mischievous little imps always playing tricks on Santa, and of course there is my Native American Elf; Ton Ka. He’s the biggest Elf of them all. Some say he’s so big he’s built like a Truck. Finally there’s my singing Elf Presley . . . Elfis Presley. He’s the favorite of Mrs. Claus. She likes to call him “the King of the Elves.” A few weeks ago I was working a photo shoot and I turned to this little elf that was working with me and I asked her what her name was. She told me her name was “Presley.” NO JOKE. The Universe sometimes catches me off-guard in this way.
I was once told that the older children were teasing a 12 year old child about Believing in Santa. I told her that you’re never too old to believe; that Christmas is not just something you can hold in your hand. Christmas is the warmth of love and giving; it’s having family around to share your time. Christmas is seeing the wonder of the season in a child’s eyes or the twinkle in a 90 year old woman when the lights on the tree are lit for the first time that season and the memories she has in her heart begin to stir. Christmas is a time of year that brings out the best in everyone. You walk down the street and you say, “Hello, Merry Christmas” to a stranger. When you see them smile it brings the warmth of Christmas to your heart. It is remembering someone who will be alone by taking them a plate of food, giving them a hug, and chatting a while. Christmas is making sure that those who are not as fortunate have some small gift to make them smile.
Remember the real reason for the season; the birth of the Christ Child in a humble stable so many years ago. Thank God and Jesus for all you have. Remember that Christmas is not about how much you spend or how many things you buy.
Never stop believing in Christmas, and the wonder it brings. Letting a child believe in Santa is a gift you can give to all children. If someone tells you there is no Santa Claus, just smile and nod— because you know the truth. If I didn’t believe I would not be a Santa myself.
Santa and Mrs. Claus are looking forward to another great season. We will be returning to a number of our events from last year as well as to some new partnerships. Mrs. Claus and I are hoping to continue your traditions and start new ones. To everyone we meet we want to bring joy, happiness and the true spirit of Christmas to you and yours. To the companies, organizations, and friends old and new that have included us in their events in 2015, we would like to wish you a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Health New Year in 2016.
Partnerships for the 2016 season are:
- Village of Hinsdale Park & Recreation Department
- Downers Grove Park District
- Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe, Illinois
- BMO Harris, Hinsdale Illinois
- Lexington Square Senior Center, Elmhurst, Illinois
- Shriners Children’s Hospital
- Advocate Children’s Hospital, Des Planes, Illinois
- Camping World, Lake Forest, Illinois
- Art Van Furniture in Downers Grove, Batavia, and Woodridge, Illinois
- D’Lara Photography, Downers Grove, Illinois
- Stacy Vitallo Photography, Batavia, Illinois
- Seven Bridges Ice Arena, Woodridge, Illinois
- DoubleTree by Hilton, Oak Brook, Illinois
- B.A.T.E. of Illinois, DuKane Chapter, West Chicago, Illinois
- Dana Vision, Wheaton, Illinois
- The Chapel at Immaculate Conception, Elmhurst, Illinois
- and all the homes and private parties we will be visiting.
Santa and Mrs. Claus would like to express what a great Christmas season we had. We enjoyed visiting with each and every one of you. To all the families we were touched by, “Thank You” for letting us into your homes and for letting us be a part of the events you attended. Continue reading
Joseph Mohr a Catholic priest wrote this hymn in 1818. He shared his hymn-poem with his friend, Franz Gruber who wrote the music. Continue reading
The real Santa lived a long time ago in a place called Asia Minor. It is now the country of Turkey. His name was Nicholas.
Nicholas’ parents died when he was just a teenager. His parents left him a lot of money which made him a rich young man. He went to live with his uncle who was a priest. Continue reading
The following was written by Mahleah Chicetawn in 2011. She makes some really strong points on why it’s important, not only for kids to believe in Santa, but for us to hold on too.
Santa Claus has always been a big part of Christmas. His image has always represented the magical part of Christmas. Eventually, children do stop believing in him, usually because people they trust like parents, friends or older siblings tell them that he doesn’t exist. Continue reading
Eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York’s Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history’s most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps. Continue reading
To whom it may concern,
I would like to recommend Mr. and Mrs. Hildreth as Santa and Mrs. Claus. I am a Life Enrichment Director for an Independent Senior Residence and have had the opportunity to personally experience Santa and Mrs. Claus. The joy they have brought to our seniors, families and community is unfounded. I continually have requests throughout the year to make sure I have the Hildreth’s back for Christmas. They are jolly, kindhearted and he sports a real “Santa” beard. Our Christmas at the Square event is an annual event, that the Hildreth’s have participated in for two years now and have they have found a special place in our hearts and our event would not be the same without them.
If you are looking for a Santa and Mrs. Claus, please look no further. You have found them.
To whom it may concern:
I would like to recommend Robert Hildreth as a candidate for Santa Claus for your organization. Robert has provided the Blue Island Park District with his services since 2011 and will continue as long as he is made available.
Robert has excelled in the position of Santa Claus and is a great asset to all our Christmas themed events. He is excellent at communicating with the children and even more so with adults. His background with children and administration has given him a keen ability to improvise in his role for any situation presented to him. His ability to transform into a truly convincing Santa Claus is beyond words.
Robert has always been professional, polite, and timely. His rapport with the public is superb and is always an asset to our Christmas programs. He will be an asset to your organization in and out of his role as Santa Clause, therefore I recommend him for any endeavor he chooses to pursue.
Blue Island Park District