West Virginia to Attend World's Largest Santa Gathering
The Celebrate Santa Festival will be taking place soon in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. And the State of West Virginia will be well represented. Santa John Johnson and his Mrs. Claus, Michelle, will be proudly walking in the Holly & Shamrock Parade on March 13, 2010 and attending the festival which runs through the 17th of March.
Celebrate Santa is the largest gathering of professional Santa and Mrs. Clauses in the world. Held each year in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, the parade alone attracted more then 20,000 spectators on a Tuesday afternoon last year, and with its move to Saturday is estimated to more then double that number for this years event.
Also for this year, Celebrate Santa has tied in with the major motion picture, Nicholas of Myra, The Story of St. Nicholas, due to be released later this year. It will feature Gerald Hartke, the movie’s writer/director and the leading actor, Matthew Mesler as Grand Marshals of the parade.
The Festival includes a convention that Santa John will attend that features classes and a tradeshow for both Mr. and Mrs. Claus that will enhance their knowledge, professionalism and even their wardrobe. “While we get together as often as we can with other Santas around our own state each year, Celebrate Santa acts as a homecoming bringing Santas from around the globe to one location,” stated Santa John Johnson, “It gives me (us) a chance to meet and socialize with Santas of different backgrounds and experiences.”
Santa John is hoping that a couple more Santas from the Mountain State may join him (them) and is trying to put a state delegation together. “There is always a few that have to work out work and family details and may come at the last minute,” saysSanta John, “Of course they are welcome to join us as part of our state group.”
“Parents often ask if all these Santas confuse the children. We just tell them that the real Santa and Mrs. Claus are around somewhere, but it is up to them to figure out which ones they are,” laughs Santa John, “Naturally though, if a Santa states he is the ‘real’ Santa the child should cross them off the list, because the real Santa would never say it openly!”
More information on the Celebrate Santa Festival can be found at www.celebratesantafestival.com.
Santa John Johnson at WVSantaClaus77@aol.com.