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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/28/2020 in Posts

  1. 7 points
    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 March 2020 is Santa Randall! Santa Randall Featured ClausNet Member – March 2020 Profile: bllwnkl Real Name: Randall Location: Canton, Ohio USA ClausNet member since: March 19, 2019 Community Reputation (as of today): 2,000 – Darn near Santa himself! Our March 2020 Featured Member hails from Canton Ohio. Santa Randall first donned the red suit a year ago. He joined the ClausNet community in March 2019 and has been a regular contributor ever since. We caught up with Santa Bill 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? Randall: "I have portrayed Santa for one entire season! I watched a Santa work a nursing home. I was amazed. I wanted to talk to him about what it was like to be Santa." ClausNet: What or who are your influences on your portrayal of Santa Claus? Randall: "The longevity of Santa and the fact that just about everyone knows Santa Claus! When my curiosity got to me, I started to research. Listening to the men and women who have so much to share is something that I can't get enough of." ClausNet: What do you enjoy most about being Santa Claus? Randall: "I am a mall Santa. I love happy, excited children! But I must say that when an excited family brings an infant or young child to get the child's first picture with Santa...well, I feel so honored and blessed to be that Santa! Just think about how your image is spread throughout the world as these photos are shared." ClausNet: What do you enjoy the LEAST about being Santa Claus? Randall: "It really gets to me when a child is so afraid of Santa. They just don't want anything to do with him/me. And then there are the parents that don't want to be there. Sadly, some parents are harder to deal with than unruly children." ClausNet: What is your most memorable visit? Randall: "A young family came up to me and I could tell that something just wasn't right. A lady holding a young child and two older children standing close. It turns out that the children lost a brother that week. I asked them if it would be okay with them if Santa prayed for them. I meant afterwards but the lady said they would love for Santa to pray for them and they reached out to me and grabbed my hands! So right there in the mall we had prayer! The lady thanked me, they turned around and walked away. They didn't care about a candy cane, they needed comfort." ClausNet: Do you have a favorite gig? Randall: "Like I said, I'm a mall Santa and for now, I want to be the best Santa I can be for the community." ClausNet: What is your dream gig? Randall: "Really just being the Santa that children need. Children are forced into the adult world way too soon. Children need to be children. That being said, I want to be a positive influence in their lives." ClausNet: What keeps you busy when you are not being Santa? Randall: "Well, I'm retired. And married, so…" ClausNet: What are your hobbies / interests? Randall: "I like to work with my hands. I've always been mechanical. I have two vintage Cub Cadet tractors that are working tractors that I use on my property. They are over 40 years old, but so far, I've kept them running. I love to shoot. There's something about hitting or trying to hit that bullseye." ClausNet: What is your favorite color? Randall: "Growing up it was blue. And although I still like blue, as I've gotten older, I'm favoring red for some reason!" ClausNet: What is your favorite food? Randall: "BBQ! Pulled pork, ribs, etc. plus all the sides. My family is from the Blueridge Mountains of Virginia. Can't beat that comfort food! But then there's Italian, Mexican..." ClausNet: Coke or Pepsi? Randall: "Between the two, Pepsi. But if someone asked me if I would be the Santa in a Coke commercial then "Coke is it!" (Pun intended)." ClausNet: What is your favorite cookie? Randall: "Oatmeal raisin. But you can't leave out cut-out cookies with icing, chocolate chip, well almost any homemade cookie." ClausNet: What is your favorite movie? Randall: "I really like the Alex Kendrick faith-based movies Facing the Giants, War Room, Courageous." ClausNet: Do you have a favorite Christmas movie? Randall: "I'm reintroducing myself to Christmas movies. But recently I have been caught up with Santa Claus documentaries. "Becoming Santa" "Believe: The True Story of Real Bearded Santas" and "They Wore the Red Suit" I've watched them over and over again soaking up all that I can." ClausNet: What is your favorite Christmas song? Randall: "O Holy Night sung by David Phelps." ClausNet: What was the last book that you read? Randall: "You may find this odd, but I don't read much. I've read through the entire New Testament and some of the Old testament. My problem is that when I'm reading, my mind goes somewhere else and I don't retain what I just read." ClausNet: What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Randall: "As a child, I wanted to be a heavy equipment operator. I thought it was the neatest thing to watch bulldozers, backhoes and front end loaders in action." ClausNet: What profession would you not like to attempt? Randall: "I totally respect the men and women that have to work outside. But that's not me. I was cold working in the shop for 44 years." ClausNet: What were some of your favorite toys as a child? Randall: "Tinker toys, erector sets, simple science projects." ClausNet: What is your most memorable experience of Santa while growing up? Randall: "I really don't have one. I remember Santa but I don't remember talking to him. It could just be my memory, after all, that was 60+ years ago!" ClausNet: What is the hardest question you have gotten as Santa Claus and what was your response? Randall: "I had a young man ask me if I will live forever. I told him that was a complicated question. I asked him if he had seen movies that made him wonder and he said yes. So I proceeded to tell him that Santa will just keep going. Somehow it works out that one day I will kind of disappear and another Santa will take my place and it all just keeps going on like that forever. It's kind of hard to explain. I asked if he sort of understood and he shook his head yes. I said just remember, there will always be a Santa." ClausNet: What is the strangest request you have gotten as Santa Claus? Randall: "The fellow was embarrassed to ask me and I asked him if he wanted me to guess. The adults tipped me off so I played along. He wanted a stapler." ClausNet: How did you find ClausNet? Randall: "I ran into a guy at a restaurant that had a "Santa" beard. I complimented him about his beard and asked if he wears a red suit at Christmas time. He did, we talked, and he gave me his business card. Later we exchanged emails. He gave me suggestions of places to go to gather information. One of them was ClausNet." ClausNet: And what do you like most about ClausNet? Randall: "Everything! The willingness to share. The stories. The suggestions. So many have been there for this new guy. I can't thank you enough." 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? Randall: "I mentioned earlier that I wanted to talk to the Santa that I was watching at the nursing home. Well, while on ClausNet, Santa DBC saw that I was from Ohio as was he. He invited me to a Buckeye Santas meeting and who do you think was there? The Santa I wanted to talk to! This Santa, Santa Tom Shilling, took me under his wing and has been a great mentor/friend. Santa Tom is well thought of and respected as a Santa portrayer. He's the one that told me about the mall position being available. He lives close to the mall and came to check on me a few times during the season." ClausNet: What advice can you give to a first time Santa or Mrs. Claus? Randall: "Research. There are tons of things regarding Santa out there. But there is one piece of advice that was drilled into my head. I was told over and over to just be yourself and have fun with it. Interact with the children. So, when I had my first visitors as Santa, I really didn't think about it, it just happened. I had a wonderful first year." ClausNet: Anything else you would like to add? Randall: "Yes! Thank you! Thank you Michael for providing this. Thank you Felix, Eileen Strom, Drosselmeyer, TamaleClaus, Santa Johnny Boy, Schwindy, et cetera, et cetera... Too many to list. God bless you all!." Thank you Randall! Everyone, please join me in congratulating Santa Randall, our ClausNet Featured Member of the Month for March 2020!
  2. 7 points
    People Are Putting Their Christmas Lights Back Up as a Sign of Hope Amid Coronavirus Fears NATHALIE KIRBY (House Beautiful) MAR 17, 2020 EXCERPT: In the midst of a global pandemic, people are looking on the bright side of life–literally. As COVID-19 continues to spread and the need for social distancing increases, Twitter users are calling for people to put their Christmas lights back up. With school and work closing, restaurants shutting down, and events being cancelled, many people are feeling the scary effects of the Coronavirus. And for parents with kids home from school for an indefinite period, the need for a light at the end of the tunnel is especially significant, which is why a call to get the Christmas lights back out is taking the internet by storm. I mean, if you're going to be stuck in your home, you might as well make it look pretty, right? (More) Source: https://www.housebeautiful.com/lifestyle/fun-at-home/a31699230/christmas-lights-for-coronavirus/
  3. 6 points
  4. 5 points
    this is fantastic ! I think it really speaks to the power of Christmas - the idea that Christmas light can give hope and peace and happiness thank you for sharing !
  5. 4 points
    I just change the decorations on my tree through the year. Right now lots of green. Soon to be changed to Easter eggs and such.
  6. 4 points
    Still have a tree up, though it is currently decorated for St. Pat's. Stay well friends, they're going to need Santa this year!
  7. 3 points
    Brewery lights and Christmas music | St. Louis spreads holiday cheer to brighten spirits amid COVID-19 concerns KEZK and Anheuser-Busch are jumping on the 'Christmas in March' bandwagon, or sleigh, in hopes of spreading some cheer Author: Craig Proffer (KSDK) Published: 5:44 PM CDT March 20, 2020 Updated: 5:44 PM CDT March 20, 2020 ST. LOUIS — It looks like it'll be Christmas in March because St. Louis is getting into the holiday spirit — again — all to brighten up residents during a time of growing concern over COVID-19. St. Louis radio station KEZK is kicking off it's "Christmas in March" celebration by playing the classic Christmas music that brings everyone together, while still practicing social distancing, of course. Source: https://www.ksdk.com/article/news/health/coronavirus/st-louis-spreading-christmas-holiday-cheer-coronavirus-concerns/63-f86ce298-0cd5-4708-980e-f0611ffd9c59
  8. 3 points
    Hallmark Channel unveils Christmas movie marathon to get us through self-quarantine Southern Living March 19, 2020 EXCERPT: Christmas just came (a whole lot) early! The coronavirus outbreak has all of us craving a bit of magic right now, and Hallmark Channel is more than willing to provide. In an exclusive report, Entertainment Tonight revealed that everybody’s favorite dispenser of warm and fuzzies has an extra-special Christmas movie marathon weekend lined up, allowing us to relive some holiday cheer and pass the time while we’re all cooped up inside. The festivities begin on Friday, March 20th at 12 p.m. EST, with Candace Cameron Bure’s A Christmas Detour. From there, Hallmark will air 27 original “Countdown to Christmas” holiday films from recent years, culminating on Sunday, March 22nd at 6 p.m. ET with Christmas in Rome starring Lacey Chabert. (Check here for the full schedule.) While it might seem odd to crave Christmas cheer on the first day of Spring, there’s actually a very good reason we love Hallmark’s holiday movies in trying times—the coronavirus pandemic certainly being one of them. They’re a welcome escape from the depressing 24-hour news cycle. SOURCE: https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/hallmark-channel-unveils-christmas-movie-190213883.html
  9. 3 points
    The CDC has NOT recommended shaving beards. https://www.sciencealert.com/no-the-cdc-is-not-telling-people-to-shave-to-avoid-covid-19
  10. 3 points
    Seems to me to be the goal of most of the news media!!
  11. 3 points
  12. 3 points
    Check it out. NORPAC has a look on the web. https://www.norpac-santas.org/
  13. 3 points
    After 60 Years, You Can Now Draw Perfect Circles on Etch a Sketch GIZMODO February 28, 2020 EXCERPT: All of my childhood memories involving Etch a Sketch end the same way. I’d fiddle with the knobs and then after a few minutes, shake it in frustration, erasing all evidence of my hideous “art.” The ionic toy is marking its 60th anniversary this year with a few limited edition launches, but of all of them the Etch a Sketch Revolution was the one that had us shaking our fists at how lucky kids today are. The Etch a Sketch Revolution is a tad smaller than your typical Etch a Sketch, but it does feature the two signature knobs at the bottom. The main difference is it features a spinning screen that makes drawing circles magnitudes easier. As in, all you have to do is manipulate the knobs on the spinning rim, and that’s it. It’s simple, but pretty neat when you consider just how torturous trying to draw anything circular, rounded, or curvy on a traditional Etch a Sketch is. Yours truly is probably the worst Etch a Sketch artist to have ever lived, but even I drew multiple circles with ease. (You can see at least three I drew in the GIF above.) That’s not to say that you’ll suddenly be drawing complex mandalas within seconds. It still takes a bit to figure out which way you should turn the knob to sketch anything more than a circle. For example, my blobby mistakes are easy to spot. SOURCE: https://gizmodo.com/after-60-years-you-can-now-draw-perfect-circles-on-etc-1841860447
  14. 3 points
  15. 2 points
    6 cases here in South Carolina ... I stopped shaving in 1968, so not shaving ... I'm very concerned about the current pandemic considering my age, as probably some of you here are as well, in the high risk pool, so being in as healthy a condition as I can has become my goal and I pray that everyone here at Claus Net fairs well and we all get through this healthy. This is going to get worse before it gets better and the world is going to need souls like us Jolly Ole Elves in Red Suites this Christmas more than ever ...
  16. 2 points
    As I said. This appears to be hyped (i.e.; fake news) news being spread by the media.
  17. 2 points
    this editorial caught my eye - and while I understand what the pastor was trying to convey, not quite sure I agree with the way it was said . . . Jeannie Cunnion: Why we shouldn't keep Christ in Christmas By Jeannie Cunnion | Fox News 12/25/2019 He was born in a manger in Bethlehem to fulfill God’s perfect and pure law on our behalf so that we might walk in freedom from trying to do enough and be enough to secure God’s love and welcome. My son, along with his 3-year-old classmates, lined up at the back of the church, nervously awaiting their procession down the center aisle to take their place on the stage. It was the annual Christmas concert at his Christian preschool, and after weeks of practice, it was finally time to perform “Feliz Navidad” and ”Jingle Bells” for the proud parents. But first, the head pastor of the church that hosts the preschool took the stage to welcome the families and offer a few thoughts on why we celebrate Christmas. “Welcome! It’s wonderful to be together today to celebrate the birth of Christ. But before the children perform, I’d like to offer a brief word of encouragement, which is this: Parents, please don’t keep Christ in Christmas.” I’ll admit the preacher didn’t have my complete attention until that moment. I had a full day ahead of me, and my mind was on how I was going to get my older kids to all the places they needed to go and still navigate all the things I needed to do. While the pastor continued on about the bumper stickers we often see on cars at this time of year that say “Keep Christ in Christmas” I turned to my husband and asked, “Did the pastor really just say “Don’t keep Christ in Christmas?” Before he could respond, the pastor answered the question for me. I can’t remember his precise words but his message clarified my confusion. “When parents pack up the Christmas decorations, they tend to put away Christ as well,” he said. “We tend to keep Christ in Christmas day alone. The invitation is to take Christ beyond your Christmas celebration and into your everyday lives.” As the pastor concluded his message, I nodded my head in agreement and whispered a prayer of gratitude for a God who wants to go with me and chooses to dwell in me by His Spirit. It’s the “wants to” that gets me. He loves us so much that He chose to enter our fallen world and broken lives in the humble form of a baby, His Son. But this is no ordinary Son. He is both God and man. He is Jesus, and every longing of the human heart finds its fulfillment in Him. In John 10:10 Jesus said, “I came so you might have life, a great full life. My purpose is to give you a rich and satisfying life.” Life! This is Christ’s gift to us. Source: https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/jeannie-cunnion-why-we-shouldnt-keep-christ-in-christmas
  18. 2 points
    The article is an excellent one!!! That God wants to be with us so very much He made the way for that to be so in Jesus. Thank you for posting the article.
  19. 2 points
    To be totally fair, the virus itself is basically a bad cold. It does tend to have more negative connotations for folks getting up in age with various other health issues to include heart problems, breathing problems etc. The biggest 'problem' so to speak with the corona virus is that folks can walk around asymptomatic (or not feeling/acting sick) for up to 21 days all while being contagious. When you get the FLU you feel terrible, you stay home and you're not infecting others. The Flu has a relatively short contagious window without symptoms. From Oct 2019 to February 2020 at LEAST 14,000 people died of influenza in the USA according to the CDC. 5 months, 14k+ dead. One of these isn't like the other. Most of the 'panic' surrounding the corona virus is misplaced at best.
  20. 2 points
    Something that is in very short supply! But hey, we have 43 million face masks which BTW, are ineffective against COVID-19!
  21. 2 points
    Conspiracy theory says it's a Chinese Bio-Weapon from Wuhan, where they develop such atrocities. May have been predicted in the 80's - Google "Wuhan 400".
  22. 2 points
    Congratulations, Santa Randall, on a well deserved honor!
  23. 2 points
    Hello Santas- First was Swine Flu, then Evain (bird) Flu. Now this! Sorry if One takes Precautions as would the Flu (which has killed Thousands)-I think We could be better off! Why did it take this long to finally Report it?
  24. 2 points
    Hardly...do you shave your beard to protect yourself from the flu or common cold? Thought not. So why would you do it for this? More people die in this country every year from the regular flu, then have died from this new bug...quit listening to screwed up politicized news companies and use some common sense.
  25. 2 points
    I love, love, love this picture! Thanks for sharing.
  26. 2 points
  27. 1 point
    Congratulations! I have enjoyed following "Bullwinkle" since we are both newbies and have similar interests.
  28. 1 point
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  30. 1 point
    came across this discussion of history involving traditions, lore, media and marketing - part history and part social science - it is interesting how they interpret the legend in terms of what was popular at the time and some of the ethnic histories that evolved to create the image we have today . . . 10 DECEMBER, 2017 - 13:56 JIM WILLIS Santa the Shaman Comes to the New World: The Shapeshifting Magic-Man from the Ancient Past In 1626, a ship filled with folks from the Netherlands put into what would later be called New York Harbor and went about building a Dutch colony called New Amsterdam. The figurehead on the prow of their ship was none other than the patron saint of sailors, Saint Nicholas. The Dutch called him "Sinter Claes." Thus, "Santa Claus" came to the new world. Saint Nicholas ( Public Domain ) But he almost disappeared as quickly as he settled in. He remained a part of American holiday traditions for only thirty-eight years. Then the new colony was ceded to England, changed its name to New York, and became inundated with an English population who knew nothing of "Sinter Claes" and despised what they considered to be pagan traditions surrounding the winter solstice. Raising Santa From the Dead It took more than a hundred and fifty years to raise the figure of Santa Claus from the dead here in America, and it required a historian, a poet, a cartoonist, and a marketing department to do it. To greatly simplify a convoluted story, it happened like this: (to read the whole article see link below...) Source - - - https://www.ancient-origins.net/history-ancient-traditions/santa-shaman-comes-new-world-shapeshifting-magic-man-ancient-past-009255
  31. 1 point
    Wunderbar! German Christmas Market has found a new home NJ Herald By Lori Comstock March 5, 2020 EXCERPT: FRANKFORD — As she looked out at the vacant land and buildings within the confines of the Sussex County Fairgrounds, Karin Meyer was already thinking about the winter holiday season. Meyer, one of the founders of the invariably successful Lake Mohawk Christmas Market, smiled as she envisioned twinkling holiday trees, children laughing and hands grasped around a warm cup of mulled cider. “It actually brings tears to my eyes,” Meyer, who was born and raised in Germany until moving when she was 18, said as she clasped her hands together. Meyer was on-hand Thursday at the Sussex County Fairgrounds with several other Board members of the Lake Mohawk German Christmas Market along with employees of the Sussex County Fairgrounds to make it official: The market has found their new home at the Frankford fairgrounds. Sabine Watson, a German Market board member, said that it was important to find a partner in Sussex County whose community-minded goals resonated with the Market’s Board. “We’ve been fortunate enough for 19 years to give back to the community so it’s that much more special to us to now have a partner that is also of the same goal to give back in both an authentic experience bringing in the holiday season as well as to those in our community,” Watson said. Mike Richards, manager of the Sussex County Fairgrounds who signed the official contract with Watson Thursday, said that the fairgrounds have always had a history as a non-profit to “give back.” “It’s an alignment of our missions, so I’m really excited,” Richards said. “We are really looking forward to it.” Joan Smith, the fairgrounds’ president, echoed Richards’ feelings, stating that she was “really happy to add a new community event to our schedule.” The market will still run for three days the first weekend of December and will be called the Lake Mohawk German Christmas Market at the Sussex County Fairgrounds this year, Watson said so as to not confuse those who have attended in the past. Come next year, the Market Board may consider a new name. As for the layout of the Market itself, Watson said the entryway will be by the fairgrounds’ conservatory where entertainment will be showcased. As visitors walk into the fairgrounds, they will see the market’s signature authentic booths, or huts, on both sides of the walkway. Outside vendors will be in the open-air barns and indoor vendors will be in the small animal barns and the Richards building. Watson said the layout will allow for food offerings to be centralized within the area being utilized, such as the Board of Agriculture BBQ pavilion. As a volunteer-led event, Watson hopes local nurseries would be willing to donate Christmas trees and there is a plan to invite local school children in the county to take part in a Christmas tree decorating program. There will be additional children’s activities, a petting zoo, pony rides and possibly carriage rides. The hours will remain the same and as has always been the case, there will be no admission fees. While crowds are estimated around 25,000 each year, Watson said the fairgrounds offers plenty of parking with no need for shuttle buses. With around 125 vendors signed up last year, Judy Beelaert, the Market’s Board president, said that while they are roughly a month behind schedule, vendor packets will be going out next week. The decision to host the 20th annual affair on the 165-acre grounds wasn’t made in haste, even though the organizers of the German Christmas Market were served, what they called, a “blow” when they were left without a place to call home on Jan. 17. Citing safety concerns due to the event’s growth, the Lake Mohawk Country Club Board of Trustees announced they would no longer host the popular event. The Market’s Board, with the assistance of Tammie Horsfield, president of the Sussex County Economic Development Partnership, met with several venue owners in Sussex County and had found three that had “risen to the top as viable new locations,” according to a release by the Market board. Those locations included the Shoppes at Lafayette and Crystal Springs. While each offered their own unique benefits, the Board said, it was ultimately the fairgrounds that was the best suited to continue the Market’s future. As the market transitions from a local venture that once began with a dozen vendors a handful of volunteers to a regional affair, still with its local roots, Watson said the new adventure at the fairgrounds shows “We’ve expanded and we really feel we want to make sure everyone within that expanded community feels a sense of welcome.” The three-day market has, over the past 19 years, welcomed friends, families and visitors from all over to usher in the holiday season with gifts, music and traditional German food. In keeping with its authenticity since the beginning as a community-centric celebration, all remaining profits, once overhead costs are settled, are donated to local charities. Since its inception, the Market has donated over $350,000 to more than 20 community agencies. As they have each year, the Market’s Board will be distributing their donations to the local organizations at the end of the month. SOURCE: https://www.njherald.com/news/20200305/wunderbar-german-christmas-market-has-found-new-home
  32. 1 point
    Congratulations and welcome to member of the month! A well deserved honor!
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  36. 1 point
    Hey !! Congratulations my friend !!!
  37. 1 point
  38. 1 point
    Congratulations...so glad to know a little more about you!
  39. 1 point
    Welcome to the MOTM Club!!!! Great interview.
  40. 1 point
  41. 1 point
    Congratulations!!! Excellent interview!!! Enjoyed getting to know more about you!!!
  42. 1 point
  43. 1 point
    I've always thought that this was a monumental historical event in humanity and a real powerful example of the Christmas Spirit, it's a shame that this production didn't resonate with more people.
  44. 1 point
    Looking forward to seeing some old friends in Santa Claus!

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