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Michael Rielly

Featured Member of the Month - August 2019

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Michael Rielly

Each month, our Featured Member section profiles a ClausNet member. Members are chosen totally at random by me and the staff. Once selected as Featured Member of the Month, we interview the candidate and post the interview here. This is a wonderful way to get to know your fellow ClausNet members!

We are happy to announce our ClausNet Featured Member for August 2019 is Kevin Haislip!

Kevin Haislip
Featured ClausNet Member – August 2019

kevin

kevin

Profile: Kevin Haislip
Real Name: Kevin
Location: Dallas, TX USA
ClausNet member since: October 20, 2009
Community Reputation (as of today): 117 – Excellent!
Website: SantasHope.com
Facebook: Kevin.Haislip

June

Our Featured Member of the Month for August 2019 has been a contributing member to ClausNet for almost 10 years – almost as long as he has been a Santa Claus! Santa Kevin Haislip joined the ClausNet community back in October of 2009. We caught up with Santa Kevin a few days ago, and here is what he had to say...

ClausNet: How long have you been portraying Santa Claus and how did you get started?
Kevin Haislip: "I've been a Santa for 11 years. That is year-round 'years' as I am a real bearded Santa and get stopped practically daily."

kevin

ClausNet: What or who are your influences on your portrayal of Santa Claus?
Kevin Haislip: "The person who influenced me the most to be Santa was St. Nicholas. Santa was not part of our family Christmas celebrations as we raised our children because we wanted to keep Christmas focused on the birth of Jesus. But reading about St. Nicholas and his own faith in Christ made me realize what a great influence Santa can be to children and families."

ClausNet: What is your most memorable visit?
Kevin Haislip: "I have way too many memorable visits, but the one that probably stands out the most is the time I was invited to the National Media Summit in New York City and met authors and national media producers from all over the country. It was a lot of fun for me to play New York City."

ClausNet: Do you have a favorite gig?
Kevin Haislip: "I am a very blessed Santa. I get to visit with a lot of corporations, cities and families and every one of them is my favorite. I look forward to them all!"

ClausNet: What is your dream gig?
Kevin Haislip: "By far, my dream gig is to be invited to bless the President and his family with a Christmas visit at the White House."

kevin

ClausNet: What keeps you busy when you are not being Santa?
Kevin Haislip: "My wife and I serve as youth and English pastors at a Chinese Christian church."

ClausNet: What are your hobbies / interests?
Kevin Haislip: "I love collecting Santa and Christmas decor and you won't believe what I found this afternoon."

ClausNet: What is your favorite color?
Kevin Haislip: "My favorite color is red, of course! What did you think it was?"

ClausNet: What is your favorite food?
Kevin Haislip: "I love Mexican food! Mexican food and hamburgers. Let me see, is there anything else?"

ClausNet: Coke or Pepsi?
Kevin Haislip: "My favorite drink is cold ice tea or better yet, hot chocolate in winter."

ClausNet: What is your favorite cookie?
Kevin Haislip: "Chocolate chip cookies are my favorite with Snicker doodles running a very close second."

ClausNet: What is your favorite movie?
Kevin Haislip: "My favorite movies are where someone has been truly genuinely changed. The Mission with Robert DeNiro depicts a slave trader turned servant to the people he previously entrapped. I also loved Shindler's List and the transformation of Shindler in the movie to loving and sacrificing for those being killed by the Nazis."

ClausNet: Do you have a favorite Christmas movie?
Kevin Haislip: "My favorite Christmas movie is probably the 1994 production of ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ closely followed by ‘The Santa Clause’ with Tim Allen."

ClausNet: What is your favorite Christmas song?
Kevin Haislip: "I love the song, 'Silent Night' but if you pass me and there is no one sitting on my lap, you will find me singing along and moving with whatever Christmas music is being played. I love Christmas."

ClausNet: What was the last book that you read?
Kevin Haislip: "I read the Bible every day but besides that I am currently working my way through John Pipers book, 'Desiring God'."

ClausNet: What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
Kevin Haislip: "I retired as a newspaper and advertising photographer of 37 years a while back. The industry isn't as much fun as it used to be. But you can't find a more fun profession for a career. Except being a Santa!! That is really fun. I think I might also like to run for President. It is time we have a candidate (Santa) that encourages people to respect one another, do the true and right thing, and learn to be generous givers."

ClausNet: What profession would you not like to attempt?
Kevin Haislip: "I wouldn't actually want to win a presidential election."

ClausNet: What were some of your favorite toys as a child?
Kevin Haislip: "I loved to build anything electronic as a young boy and as a teen, I got a camera for Christmas and began a wonderful exploration."

ClausNet: What is your most memorable experience of Santa while growing up?
Kevin Haislip: "I remember my parents used to take my sister down to the May D & F store in downtown Denver every Christmas season to visit Santa. He was a wonderful Santa and I loved looking at all the outside window displays of elves making toys, baking cookies, packing the sleigh and all that went into making Christmas, Christmas!"

ClausNet: What is the hardest question you have gotten as Santa Claus and what was your response?
Kevin Haislip: "Over the years, I've had a handful of children tell me their father died, or mother or sibling died that year. All I can do is to hold them close and cry with them. Another heart wrenching time was an older sister who came in with her brother who was in a wheelchair. He had Cerebral Palsy. She and I talked first and she told me she didn't want anything for herself for Christmas. She wanted me to make sure her brother had the best Christmas ever. After recomposing myself, I told her mother who had come through with her children."

ClausNet: What is the strangest request you have gotten as Santa Claus?
Kevin Haislip: "The strangest request is actually my most memorable one. A young boy named Dwayne came to me and sat down and looked at me with a very puzzled expression. He didn't say a word for at least a minute or longer. Finally, I asked him what he wanted for Christmas and he said, ‘Santa, all I want for Christmas is to get off the naughty list!’ He said nothing more, jumped down and disappeared into the crowd.’"

ClausNet: How did you find ClausNet?
Kevin Haislip: "Santa Felix Estridge told me about ClausNet when I got started and I quickly signed up."

ClausNet: And what do you like most about ClausNet?
Kevin Haislip: "I am a busy man and when I get a few minutes, I love to sit down and read up on what other Santas and Mrs Claus are doing. The articles and news are often the kinds of things I can learn from and make myself even better at what I do. I have learned a lot from everyone at ClausNet and from all the contributors. Thank you all!"

ClausNet: Is there a Santa or Mrs. Claus over the years that you admire or has inspired you? Can you tell us a little bit about him/her?
Kevin Haislip: "The single biggest help and encouragement to me came from Santa Felix Estridge. We don't see each other very often and I regret that, but Felix did a lot helping me get my feet on the ground and moving. I have mentored many other Santas through the years as well. Felix taught me well!."

ClausNet: What advice can you give to a first time Santa or Mrs. Claus?
Kevin Haislip: "The best advice I give new Santas is to read as much as you can from StNicholasCenter.org about St Nicholas. Get to know who he was, why he was so beloved and why he was motivated to do the things he did for others. Learn to follow his example as he followed Christ. He is an incredible example to all Christians!"

ClausNet: Anything else you would like to add?
Kevin Haislip: "It is not about the suit. It is about the man! Be the man if you're going to be Santa."

Thank you Kevin! Everyone, please join me in congratulating Kevin Haislip , our ClausNet Featured Member of the Month for August 2019!

kevin

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Santa Mike IN

Congratulations.

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Drosselmeyer

Thank you for sharing your story !!                                 :congrats:

I also really love the Mission - the message of forgiveness and great is a strong theme, but also the question of how do you work out your faith - a very compelling movie !

HOWEVER  - did I miss something ?  Did you answer the mystery question about what it was you found this afternoon ???  Inquiring minds want to know . . . 

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David Dixon

Congratulations!!!

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Felix Estridge

Congratulations & welcome to the MOTM club!

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TamaleClaus

Congratulations,  thanks for sharing your story, as a individual in learning mode, it helps getting a view point from someone more knowledgeable,

 

 

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Santa Bill Reiller

Congratulations and welcome to the MOTM Club!!!!!  Great interview.

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Santa Ed K

Congratulations!!!

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Eileen Strom

:congrats:

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Santa Bruce Geron

Congratualtions.jpg.abd43a368e16926947c862f7b2429be1.jpg

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Santa Johnny Boy

Congratulations, Santa Kevin, on a well deserved honor!

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Black River Santa

:congrats:

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Black Hills Santa

Congratulations, Sir!

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SCSanta

Congratulations and welcome to the MOtM Club!

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bllwnkl

Congratulations!

I love reading these. Thank you so much for sharing.

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Tommy

Congratulations!!!  Excellent!!!

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SantaJeff

I loved reading your Q&A!  Congratulations, Santa!!

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magicsantaphil

Congratulations!!!

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Kevin Fast

Congratulations

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SantaShawnH

Congratulations & welcome to the MoTM club!

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