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Top 10 Reasons Children Like PRETENDING TO BE SANTA CLAUS

FREE WEBINAR register below

Our special guest for this session is Patrick de Haan. Pat is a Masters-Level Counselor and he’s been Santa for over thirty years. In fact, in 2017 he was the IBRBS “International Charitable Santa of the Year.”

You may also remember Pat from the amazing “Being Santa Claus for Children with Special Needs” session he helped organize and presented back in 2016.

As a counselor, he works with at-risk, often behaviorally-intense children, some of whom struggle with the challenges of mental illness. Many are in the judicial system. As Santa, he serves homeless, impoverished, special needs, medically fragile, and terminally ill children and their families. Annually, he encounters around 15,000 children.

He recently posted this list of the “Top 10 Reasons Children Like Pretending to be Santa Claus”.

While this list is not a scientific paper or a formal study, and no data that would be required by an academic submission was collected, the narrative Pat wrote conveys his observations as a professional counselor with decades of field experience and I believe it can be very useful to all of us who portray Santa Claus.

One of the activities Pat does with children is to provide them with the opportunity to select a character with whom they identify.

Then, through puppets or by dressing in a representative costume, they are allowed to become that character and act out their perception of what that means.

While some of the more popular characters are traditional, things like astronauts and firemen, the most universally chosen persona is Santa Claus or another representative of the Christmas Community, such as Mrs. Claus or an elf.


Here are the reasons the children gave:

1) Santa means Love – They aren’t clear about what this “love” thing is, but they can feel its presence and want to be surrounded by it.

2) Even better, Santa means Unconditional Love and Acceptance – They might not know the terms, but they understand there is a higher form of love that accepts you regardless of what you do. Forgiveness also ties into this area.

3) Santa is Safe and Will Not Abuse you – Many of the children we serve are victims of abuse. Often this abuse comes from a family member, from someone who is responsible for keeping them safe. Santa represents someone who is safe and nurturing, not someone who needs to be feared. I might add that a Santa hug has tremendous therapeutic value.

4) Everyone Likes Santa – This has to do with peer influence. They see that their peers like Santa and they simply want to be liked by their peers.

5) Santa is Famous – Our culture values fame and celebrities. Santa is one of the biggest celebrities on the planet and the children want that kind of recognition.

6) Santa Travels around the world – Many of the children, especially those living within the inner-city, never leave their immediate community and have no concept of the wonders beyond their neighborhood. They want to go out and explore the world, exactly like Santa does.

7) Everyone Trusts Santa – This is a double-edged sword. The children don’t trust very easily and often are not trusted by the community. Apprehension by the community is usually based on racial or socio-economic beliefs and factors like the area’s crime rate. The community accepts Santa.

8) Santa makes people Happy – They want to rid the world of the pain they feel and as Santa they could make people happy again.

9) Santa is Jolly and Laughs a lot – Often their lives are full of pain and fear. They want to be happy and laugh.

10) Santa Cares about me – The bottom line is they want to be someone who cares about others, which is the very definition of Santa Claus.

I’m guessing you’re thinking about now… “YEP… that who Santa Claus is… and I’m so blessed to be able to bring the magic of Santa and the Christmas Spirit to my community.” Or something like that. Right?

FREE WEBINAR: Pat will be discussing these 10 points and more during a FREE webinar on Thursday, March 19th from 5:30 – 6:30 Pacific Time

ALL SANTAS WORLDWIDE ARE INVITED – The session will also be available ‘on-demand’ at no charge at least until the end of April. Attendance for the live session is limited to 100.

REGISTER HEREhttps://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5988729079912828940 

Video Auditions BOOK Sit Com Role

I’m sitting in an “actors trailer” at the “Base Camp” on Universal Studios in Los Angeles… (I’m sorry, but I’m not yet allowed to release the name of the show.)

I’ve been approved by “Hair”, “Make-up” and “Wardrobe”,  I’m sitting in front of one of those mirrors with the lights all of the way around them, saying my lines, out loud, to myself. I’m 100% “off-book”, meaning I have completely memorized my lines.

It’s nearly 6:00PM.  I’m as ready as I’ll ever be so on my phones ‘notepad’ I start to write this story…

12 DAYS AGO: “Peter, I’m sorry, I just can’t make it to an audition tomorrow.” That was a first for me. I ALWAYS make it to auditions, but this time, 12 days ago, was different. 

Earlier in the day, I had been to the doctor’s office with my daughter, surgery was scheduled for a few days later, I wanted to be there for her and the grandkids, on top of that it was snowing on the pass and making the audition (which was nearly 700 miles away) would have meant driving over the pass at night in a snowstorm.

I if did make the drive I would then need to stay in LA for a few days waiting to see if I received a “call-back”, a second audition, that is a very common part of the audition process. 

The reasons to pass on this audition outweighed the reasons to do it… even though it was a role in a network sitcom that I would have really  LOVED to play… my answer was no, I can’t make. Peter, my agent, knew this was a great role for me…

“Make a video audition. I’ll submit it and see if I can get the casting director to watch it. Can you do that?” Peter asked. Enthusiastically I said, “Absolutely, I’ll have it to you mid-day tomorrow!”

I used both my audition experience and video knowledge to create an audition video and then a 2nd video…

YESTERDAY:  I had a meeting with, Peter, in his Hollywood office. He was thrilled I booked the show and was telling the other people in his office how I had booked a part in a sit-com all with video submissions, NO in-person audition… I was congratulated by everyone for getting the booking, especially in this once extremely rare, but now increasingly popular way of auditioning, via video.

There’s a knock on the door of my trailer… “Ed, They’re ready for you on set.”  It was 7:30 PM.

The shoot has now competed…

I was “wrapped” (released after shooting the scene) at about 10:15 PM and now I’m completing the story…

I was brought to the set, a HUGE sound stage with a house where we’ll be shooting the scene.

I met my scene partner, the star of the show, some of the other crew members, and the director… the first words out of the director’s mouth were “We LOVE you!” She went on telling me what she and the others loved about my auditions…

I’ve done enough shoots now to know that directors and others on the production team often say these types of things to ‘pump-up’ the actors… but I did feel she was sincere and it certainly did make me feel good.

The next 2 hours were spent rehearsing and shooting the scene. 

Here’s where the fun really starts… it’s like playing “make-believe” as kids. 

Yes, there dozens of people standing around and lights and cameras and a director saying “action” and “cut”… (just like the movies) and after each “take” we’re all laughing. Everyone is having a GREAT TIME. 

Mind you the entire scene is only a minute or two long… and we were doing “takes” for 2 hours, the primary reason for taking so much time is camera angels. We take 2 or 3 “takes” with a certain camera set-up and then they reset the cameras to either a different location or a different field of view size and take it again… and that happens several times.

My character is supposed to have my scene partner and the audience thinking, “Hey, was that really Santa Claus?” and I’m confident we did that. I can’t wait to see it on TV and see what camera angles were used and how it’s edited… my bet is, it will be really funny.

When I started portraying Santa the thought of doing TV shows, commercials & movies never entered my mind. I had never acted a day in my life. I’ve never cared much about TV or movies or actors… and I still watch very little TV and I don’t keep up on actors or TV shows… but I’M LOVING doing “shoots” of all types.

Now with the huge increase in demand for ‘video-content’, the increase in production facilities across the country and around the world and the increasing popularity of video as an audition vehicle the doors are opening wider for Santas across the country.

Personally I’ve found the “Entertainment Industry” to be a wonderful way to increase my income, my impact as Santa and my fun.

I encourage you to consider it if you haven’t already… and of course this is the reason we have a Platinum Level of membership here at The Santa Claus Conservatory.


Do you use “MAGIC” in your Santa or Mrs. Claus portrayal/performances?

Would you like to learn how others use magic in their appearances?

If so JOIN US Tuesday, January 28th for a FREE web session.

If you use magic in any way in your Santa appearances you are invited to share what you do with other Santas in this unique session. If you have photos or videos you would like to use as part of your presentation please email them, or links to them to me ASAP.

In order to present you will need a webcam & mic. If you have a webcam and mic and have spoken on our other sessions your good to go. If you can use Skype or other video chat programs you’re likely good to go. If you have questions or concerns you can see the full system requirements and test your system here- https://support.goto.com/webinar/help/system-requirements-for-staff-g2w010024


2019 Santa Season Debrief 2 – Santas Sharing

The entire world-wide network of Santas & Mrs. Claus are invited to this FREE session to share and learn from each other.

Attendees are encouraged to share both positive and negative experiences from the 2019 season so we can all learn from one another.



Santa Debrief Form

Please take a few minutes to share a bit about the HIGHLIGHTS & LOWLIGHTS of your Santa 2019 Santa season…

Santa Debrief - 2019 Season

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Santa Claus Magic & More

Last week’s Facebook Group poll showed a lot of interest (116 votes) in “Santa Magic”.

  • Do you use magic in your appearances?
  • Would you like to share what you do with other Santas?
  • If so please let me know. (Call 424-343-9555) text, email, message me on Facebook)

If we can get a small panel, perhaps 3 or 4 people, to share what they do I would be happy to host a webinar on this topic.


 “18 Tips to Make 2020 Your Most Extraordinary Santa Season Ever”

“Santa Debrief II” Santas share the best & worst of the past Santa Season  

18 Tips to Make Santa Season 2020 Absolutely Extraordinary

In 2019 TSCC Members across the continent and around the world reported having their best year ever.

In this FREE WEBINAR, you will learn how many Santa increased their income & impact.

Several members were able to extend their season, quite a number appeared in parades & Tree Lighting ceremonies, some even appeared in TV commercials, shows & movies.

At first glance, you might think these Santas just got lucky, and of course, that’s true, and as the old saying goes, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” 

Preparation allows you to confidently move in the direction of your dreams.

Preparation allows you to answer questions better.

From the Stage at the Ace Theater Los Angeles

Preparation can make you look extraordinary, even better than you thought possible.

Preparation can help you book the elusive high profile events.

Preparation can help get you on TV & much more…

Preparation is key, and in this session, you will get tip so you can be better prepared, but preparation is only HALF of the formula. 

Marketing is the process of creating opportunities. 

When you market your Santa business effectively you can become sought after.

Becoming sought after allows you both more & better opportunities… and of course this makes “being” Santa Claus even more fun… and potentially much more lucrative as well.

And if you’re a ‘Volunteer Only” Santa (as I was for 7 years), marketing can help you create an even greater impact.

In this “18 Tips” session you will learn specific things you can do to both be more prepared and generate better opportunities for 2020.

We will take 2 Tips from each of the 9 “Core Curriculum” sessions in The Santa Claus Conservatory.

NOW AVAILABLE ON-DEMAND. Log in at any level (including the FREE Level) to watch this information pack session.

Santa & Mrs. Claus 2019 Debrief Session

The greatest value of The Santa Claus Conservatory is the sharing of experience amongst our members, and each year one of the most fun and often most eye-opening sessions is our annual “Debrief Session”.

Dream Center 2019

Live attendance is limited to 100 participants and everyone who registers will be sent the link to access the session “on-demand”.

To watch on-demand click here

Thanks Giving

After spending 25 days in Los Angeles, I flew home to Southern Oregon last Thursday.

Friday was spent playing & making a Thanksgiving dinner with my wife & grandkids. That evening my son, daughter & son-in-law joined us for the amazing celebratory feast.

As is our custom we each took a couple of minutes and shared some of the things we are thankful for.

Late last night on my l flight back to Los Angeles my mind drifted to many other things I’m thankful for…

I started to make some notes…

  • I’m so thankful for the space you grant me in your email inbox.
  • I’m thankful that so many Claus portrayal artists all over the world are inspired, uplifted and empowered by what I share. This has truly been a gift in my life. Thank you.
  • Because of you, I am inspired to keep going, to keep writing, making videos and hosting webinars, even when I’m tired and my schedule is full.
  • Because of you, I’ve learned that serving and helping others in our Worldwide Claus network fuels my soul.
  • Because of you, I’ve experienced that what you give out comes back to you in wonderful ways.
  • I’ve also experienced a few Clauses who seem determined to tear me down… they’ve provided me with the opportunity to practice acceptance… and I’m thankful for who they have helped me become and the actions they’ve inspired me to take, like starting the Worldwide Santa Claus Network.

Special Note: The Worldwide Santa Claus Network “Founding Member” opportunity ends on or before December 8th. To learn more CLICK HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.

  • Because of you, I am filled with gratitude.
  • Because of your willingness to portray a Claus and embody that Claus Spirit,
  • Because you are one of the few daring souls who is letting your heart lead the way,
  • Because you are willing to learn and grow,
  • Because you are willing to BE that avatar of kindness, generosity & goodwill.
  • Because of you, I am inspired, uplifted and empowered.
  • Because of you, I am deeply grateful.
  • Thank you for allowing me to be part of your journey.
  • I have learned so much because of you.
  • I am better because of you.
  • I sincerely thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Keep shining your light this holiday season and throughout the new year. Don’t allow anyone to dim your light. Stand strong. Be proud of all you’ve done and who you’ve become. And know that I appreciate you.

Happy Thanksgiving.

All the best,

Pre-Season “Pep Talk” & LAUNCH of NEW SANTA NETWORK

Tuesday, November 5th at 5:30 Pacific Time 

Your computer, smartphone or tablet

PART 1: A virtual “Season Launch Pep Talk” for Santas & Mrs. Clauses worldwide 


PART 2: The launch of SOMETHING BRAND NEW for the Worldwide Santa & Mrs. Claus Network

You will hear several tips Santas across the country have shared on interacting with children, appearing at home & business parties, appearing at large community events, a bit about malls & retail shops, interacting with the media… even a few things you can do this year to make next year even better… and that’s all in the first 30-45 minutes…

The second 30-45 minutes will be a demo of what is nothing short of a revolution in the Santa community… 

The formation of a worldwide network of Santas & Mrs. Clauses dedicated to helping each other, with no organizational politics… This network is dedicated to increasing public awareness of Santa being available to appear at everything from small home & neighborhood parties to large corporate & community events.

As a community, we will increase the national & international awareness of Santa & Mrs. Claus bringing the personal embodiment of the Christmas Spirit to thousands, and perhaps millions, of more people every year. 

I’m SO excited to see this effort become reality in time for this Christmas season!!!


Of course, this session will very likely be ‘overbooked’.  The maximum attendance at the live session is 100. If you can’t get in on the live session the video recording will be available ‘on-demand’ by Wednesday. 11-06.

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