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  1. Snow Tunnels, What are Snow Tunnels? By Elmo D. Elf You know, I've been reporting on all sorts of things happening up here at North Pole City and especially up at the Claus Complex located right at the North Pole. The thing I seem to get the most Personal Messages about are the physical layout of all Santa's facilities. The question that seems to be asked the most is, "Snow Tunnels, What are Snow Tunnels?" I suppose that is a topic that needs a bit of an explanation. So when I asked Santa, "How come you have these Snow Tunnels? Are they necessary; when were they built and why was it deter-mined they were necessary?" This was the story I was told which I'm simply passing on to you. The idea for having Snow Tunnels was conceived long before I came on the scene. I've been told it was back in the 1600's when the first tunnel was dug and it was work done by several dozen Elves and Santa himself. You see, at that time the Elves lived in Santa's house with the Claus' and always had trouble getting through the very deep snow when going out to or from work every day in the Toy Shoppe. Like all Santa's, that one was pretty crafty too, so one morning right after Christmas deliveries had been made, he said at the breakfast table just as the Elves were finishing their oatmeal, toast and hot chocolate, "Where are Sid, Alex, Dudley, Milo and Gus this morning?" and Mrs. Claus answered, "Well Santa, they're still up in their beds with terrible colds and high fevers. They won't be able to work today, no sir-ee." That's when Santa stood up and said, "Okay men, today we're going to build that tunnel we've been talking about. It stands to reason that if we don't have to go out in the cold, damp, snowy air, we can cut way back on the number of colds we have year-round. I'll go get the shovels from the basement; you guys finish up and I'll meet you at the back door in five minutes." Well, the Elves finished their oats, toast and hot chocolate. Then they put on their big ol' warm coats, their boots (with turned up toes) and mittens and waited by the back door until Santa arrived. Then, they all went out together. Now I don't believe I need to mention anything about the snow up at the North Pole. Why it's everywhere...and it's deep too. In fact, the famous Pole (yes, there is a Pole) at the North Pole. It was installed in a hole that had been drilled down into the ice after it had been painted with a broad red stripe from top to bottom. Each time that red stripe comes around it drops down 1'-0". So each morning when Santa first gets out of bed, he puts on his house shoes and robe, pushes back the curtains and looks out of his bedroom window. He knows that if he counts the number of times that red stripe comes around that pole from it's very top; he can subtract that number from 60'-0" (which is the length of the pole sticking up out of it's hole) and he will know exactly how deep the snow is that morning! He'll tell you that it's usually in the 25'-0 to 30'0 depth most of the time. Santa and the Elves all went out of the back door of the house from Mrs. Clause' kitchen. The snow was well over Santa's head even before they went down the steps that reached the cold, deep blue colored ice on which everything up at the North Pole sits. Santa had talked with Rufus, who at that time was the keeper of the reindeer and who did the same kind of job that Ike the Elf does today. Santa had him hitch-up the eight reindeer to the sleigh and take half the Elves to the Toy Shoppe with their shovels and they all began digging the snow toward one another. First down to the ice and then under the snow toward the others. As they shoveled, they put the snow into the back of the sleigh. Whenever the sleigh was full, Rufus would climb up and he'd haul the snow away, while the Elves at that end would catch their breath while leaning on their shovels. Rufus would fly up in the air with the sleigh being pulled by the reindeer and turn sharply and the snow would fall out with the remainder being blown out by the wind. Then he'd go to the other hole being dug and the Elves at that end would fill the sleigh up again with snow again and Ike would repeat the process. Well it was fairly easy digging and the process was repeated over and over again until about 12:00 noon when Mrs. Claus opened the back door of her kitchen and hollered down into the hole of the tunnel, "Lunch is ready". Santa hollered back, "We'll be finished in about 15 or 20 minutes and we'll all come in then because we'll be all done. Now, I don't know this to be a fact but Santa said that Mrs. Claus is reported to have said under her breath, but loud enough to hear, "Well, Glory be!" Now, it's not known just how many tons of snow were removed from that first tunnel. But having been in that very tunnel, I can tell you that it's 8'-0" high 10'-0" wide and about 50 yards long. Further more, you must remember that only about 15 Elves digging from both ends did it in slightly over 4 1/2 hours! Now that's a pretty good indicator of just how hard these Elves can work. Don't you all wish that the building of tunnels, roads and highways where you are in this day and age could get done as quickly, as well constructed and without all the expensive mechanical equipment. Maybe you just need to get a few Elves involved! Having toured the entire Claus Complex, and passing through the tunnels to the Toy Shop, the Reindeer Barn, the Elves Dormitory, the Communications Center, the Printing Plant and the 28 Finished Goods Storage Facilities, the Sleigh Hangar and the Staging Area, it's taken an awful lot of effort to get all the tunnels dug. Santa tells me that there are almost ten miles of tunnels today at the Claus Complex. Now I'm sure you're wondering, "Has the installation of all those tunnels reduced the number of colds experienced each year by the Elves?" The answer is a resounding "yes!" What's even more astounding is that winter colds are a 12 month a year situation at the North Pole; there's no need for the Elves to wear heavy coats to and from work or to fear being lost in a driving snow storm! But did you notice that in the long list of facilities located up here at the Claus Complex here at the North Pole which are all connected with the Snow Tunnels, there's no mention of an infirmity or hospital? Ol' Santa
  2. Santa Bob of Tulsa

    Santa is hiring!

    From the album: Santa Bob and his buddies

    Santa needs fresh new Elves to train
  3. highmarks

    Santa Highmarks

    From the album: Santa Highmarks

    With the new beard from the Custom Wig Company
  4. highmarks

    Santa Highmarks

    From the album: Santa Highmarks

    Just a Picture of me with the Santa Belt
  5. AL Santa

    AL Santa has a new Custome Wig Co. "set"

    From the album: Santa 2014 Pictures

    Went down to Louisville and came back looking like this!
  6. From the album: Walking Sticks

    Learned a great deal and had allot of fun. Met some great Santa's and Mrs. Claus
  7. Report # 9 ClausNet July 14, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf If you’ve ever been asked a question by a 6 or 7 year old about how things during Christmas happen and found yourself searching for a logical answer, but one just didn’t come. Well, then you need to read the North Pole Reports right here on ClausNet. You see, Elmo D. Elf has been granted authority by Santa himself to get the answers to any questions and present the answers right here on your favorite Web Site. Before starting though, here's this week's Toy Production Report. Santa’s Toy Production Report Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+-) . Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 59.3% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 59.3% + .01 . Video Games & Electronics 59.5% + .03 Blocks, Legos, Erector Set 59.6% + .04 . Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 57.6% - 1.9* Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 59.2% - 0 - . Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc. 59.2% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars & Boats 59.7% +.05 . Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 59.5% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Bk’s 59.2% - 0 - . Sports Gear, Trading Cards 59.2% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 59.2% - 0 - . * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Break down Santa, “How do You Get to Every Kids House in Just On Night? A brief recap: Thanks to ClausNet, Elmo’s had the opportunity to visit the Claus Complex at the North Pole. Santa and his Chief Elf Snowflake have taken him through the Toy Shop; the Elves Dormitory; the Reindeer Barn; the Sleigh Hanger and the Communications Center and the Snow Tunnel that connects all the operations without going out in the bad weather. This weekend he’s a guest of Santa but he’s staying in the Elves dorm. Our story picks up on Saturday Morning where he and Snowflake have been invited by the Claus’ to have breakfast. Elmo, had set his alarm to go off at 6:45 AM (NPT). He put on his robe and slippers, grabbed his shaving kit and headed down the hall to the huge men’s Bathroom. Nobody was in there he assumed because it was Saturday. The bath towels were stacked on a big wooden rack; so he grabbed one and headed into a private shower stall. The water was already warm, so he stepped under it and began to lather up. ‘This is really nice’ he thought to himself. After rinsing, he dried; pulled on his boxers; stepped into his slippers, hopped out of the shower and put his robe on again. Still, there was nobody around. There were 26 individual Lavatories; each with a mirrored cabinet above. So rather than waste time, he started down the line, figuring that if there was an empty cabinet that it would be available for him to use. After checking about 15 cabinets, he found one that was totally empty. So he brushed his teeth; wet his face and lathered it up; took out his razor and began removing the usual morning stubble. About that time, a bell rang and he began to hear activity. Within two minutes the men’s room was abuzz with activity and Elves were talking to one another, singing, laughing and joking. Mort the Elf slapped him on the back and said, “Well, how’d you sleep mate?” “Oh, just fine,” I replied. “This really a very nice place y’all have here,” I added. “Sure enough is,” was his reply. “Whenever Santa does anything, he always does it up right! Have you seen the Stealth Sleigh yet”, he asked? “You bet I have,” I answered while brushing my teeth. I then held up my wet towel and Mort pointed toward the rack where I had found it and said, ”Just throw it on the other end of the rack. See ya’ around” and he rushed off. I returned to my room, put on a new shirt; pulled on a pair of Elf trousers and pointed toe shoes; combed my hair and headed downstairs to meet Snowflake. “Well, good morning sunshine” was her greeting. Are you ready to go over to the Claus’ for breakfast?” I replied, “You bet I am; I feel like I could eat a Polar Bear.” We headed for the Snow Tunnel Stairway and talked about how nice everything was in the Dormitory. As we approached the Claus Stairway, I asked if pets were allowed there and Snowflake replied by saying ‘perhaps something could be worked out where your dog could stay out in the barn with Ike’. I had to confess, “It’s not a dog…it’s a cat!” “You have a cat; what breed is it,” she asked? “It’s an extremely rare breed called a ‘Christmas Himalayan”, I answered “They are especially bred for extremely cold, snowy areas of the world”, I replied. “You don’t say” she said, “I know all about them; as a matter of fact I’ve got a surprise for you.” At the top of the Stairway, she pulled the bell rope and we could hear the Jingle Bells ringing throughout the house. I looked at Snowflake and she had a big grin on her face. I asked, “A surprise; what kind of surprise?” About that time, the door opened and there stood Mrs. Claus in a beautiful lace apron, “Good morning you two; come on in, she said. Santa’s still up stairs shaving but he’ll be down in a couple of minutes”, she said. Snowflake and I both said, “Thank You.” We all sat down around the breakfast table and had a sip of some warm hot chocolate. Snowflake looked at Mrs. Claus and asked, “Where’s Buckwheat this morning?” “Oh, he’s still up stairs with Santa or he’s still asleep on the bed’” was her answer. “Buckwheat,” I inquired; “Who’s this Buckwheat ?” “Oh that’s just our cat,” was her reply. Tell Elmo what breed of cat that Bucky is,’ urged Snowflake. Well, have you ever heard of a Christmas Himalayan?” she asked. “Heard of ‘em…I own one,” I said affirmatively. “My, how unusual, Mrs. Claus replied. I suppose you know they’re very Rare?” “Yes mam. I do. Does your Buckwheat have a buff colored coat, a white face and a black colored Christmas Tree on the end of his nose,” I inquired. “Absolutely Elmo, that’s a perfect description of one of these Christmas Himalayan cats; what’s your cat's name; is it a male or female and how old is it”, were Mrs. Claus questions fired in rapid succession. I smiled saying, “Let’s see here, Boots is her name; and she’s a three year old female, that’s large for her age.” “Oh, I’m so excited, Bucky would make such a wonderful father for ‘Boots’ first litter,” Snowflake injected, “and would you promise me the first choice should there ever be any kittens?” About that time we heard the stairway creaking under Santa’s footsteps. As he started through the long hall back toward the kitchen, the big ol’ Grandfather clock was striking 8:00 AM. Then, as he stepped through the doorway, he was carrying Bucky on the bulge of his belly above his wide black belt. “Good morning everyone,” his voice boomed; then looking at me he inquired, “Did you sleep well Elmo?” “You bet I did, sir” I replied. Mrs. Claus said, “Santa, put Bucky down; wash your hands and sit down. I’ve got your first stack of flapjacks all ready. Snowflake, how many of these flapjacks do you want,” she asked? She said, I’ll start out with one please, mam.” I took one look at Snowflake’s Plate totally covered by one flapjack about ¾” inches thick and thought to myself ‘I doubt I can eat one of those.’ I said, “Just one please mam.” Then Mrs. Claus delivered Santa’s plate (actually a platter) to the table with seven or maybe eight flapjacks on it. Shucks I’ve seen birthday cakes smaller than his ‘regular stack’ as he called it. As she placed the platter in front of him she said, “There’ll be some more in a few minutes, dearie’” she added. Santa looked at me and said, “Let’s see, you wanted to know how I’m able to get to every good kids house in one night right?” “Yes sir,” I replied. “Well let’s just talk about that for a few minutes Elmo; It’s really quite elementary. First off, the world’s population is about 7 Billion 180 million people this year, growing at a very rapid rate…lots of baby’s being born all the time, okay? Now we can estimate that about 1 billion of these individuals making up the total population are children who are the age we need to be concerned with. So, if billion kids, less the 40% of those who are bad as Snowflake explained last night; who we drop from the computer each year, that leaves about 600,000,000 million children. Now with an average of 2.5 children per household, we need to concern ourselves with only about 240,000,000 stops…right,” he asked? “Well…all those facts sound about right to me,” I replied. “So far; so good”, he said. “Now we have to determine how long it’s dark…okay? Now, most folks think that it’s night time where they live for 8 or 10 hours, depending whether we’re talking about the northern or southern hemisphere in December, right? Well, now that’s true; but, it’s always dark someplace on earth, isn’t it? So if the earth rotates once every 24 hours and let’s assume I start in Sydney, Australia when it’s just starting to turn dark for example; and work my way west, then I have the 24 hours plus about ten more to cover the entire Earth before arriving back in Sydney. So what we’re really saying is that we have about 34 hours to visit about 240 million homes. That’s precisely the reason for the Stealth Sleigh because it’s over ten times faster than the old sleigh’s and nearly ten times larger. Now that 10 times larger size means fewer returns up here to get additional loads of toys and that combined with its speed reduce wasted time. That all means that it takes a whole lot less time to do the job now than before. Does all that make sense to you Elmo,” Santa asked? “Well, yeah, sort of,” I said. But that’s an awful lot of mathematical wizardry. How do you ever explain that to those kids down there in Texas?” Did Snowflake tell you that I go down to Texas every year to do some Market Research,” he inquired? “Yes sir,” was my reply. “You know Elmo; she certainly does know an awful lot about what goes on up here. Once in a while, she will question something I say or do and make me stop and think a second. Do you want to know what? I’ve found that she’s usually right. That’s why I always stop and reconsider anything she questions me on. Why, back when my dad was Santa and I was just a "Pup" apprentice; my mother used to spend a lot of time out in the Toy Shop in charge of a department we used to have called, “Girls Things.” My mom used to do the same thing. And that proved to me one thing. It proved that two heads are always better than one. You sort of come to rely on them, you know what I mean,” he winked as he concluded? “Are you ready for another flapjack Snowflake,” Mrs. Claus asked as Santa stuffed another big bite dripping with maple syrup in his mouth. “Elmo, how about you,” she asked. I was between bites and was able to mumble, “They’re great, Mrs. Claus, but I have all I can handle right here in front of me,” I replied. Santa said, “Say ‘Dumplin’, I’ll have five more please, with some more butter and syrup; and would you mind bringing those ‘Wet-Wipes’ over for me. I got some syrup in my beard.” Then Santa looked at me and said, “Elmo…never grow a beard. Now a mustache is okay; but a beard gets in a fellow’s way when he busy!” We all just laughed. “Getting back to my annual trip down to Texas, U.S.A. Elmo” Santa said, “those young boys and girls do ask me some pretty penetrating questions”. “Once a young fellow named Cody, who was 6 or 7 years old and lives about 3 miles from the south end of the Main, North – South Runway at Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport; which is one of the biggest and busiest airports in the world asked me, ‘Santa, How can I see you when you fly over my house?’ I tried to explain to him that I had to maintain certain altitudes and speeds around that airport for safety reasons because the Air Traffic Controllers always instruct me to do so, even in the middle of the night. Well he asked again how he could see me fly over, so I just explained it to him this way. I said, ‘Cody, have you ever seen an airplane fly over that had what looked like smoke coming out the back?’ He replied ‘Yes, a lot of times.’ Then I explained to him that really wasn't smoke. I told him ‘That’s what’s called a con trail or a vapor trail because what you actually are seeing is steam.’ He repeated, ‘Steam?’ Then I told him, ‘You see, up about 35,000 feet, the air is very, very cold and damp. So when that cold, damp air goes through those hot jet engines the moisture in the air condenses and comes out the back as steam; the steam then vaporizes, and in this case turns to ice crystals…and that’s what you see; ice crystals just reflecting the light from the sun. Then, as the plane moves away, those ice crystals just vaporize and then fade away’. I told him, ‘That may be difficult for you to understand now but that’s what happens.’ But Cody persisted and said, ‘Okay, but how can I see you up there?’ So I just told him, ’Cody, I come your way a lot of times, so if you ever see a vapor trail way up in the sky and you can’t see a big jet plane in front of it, well, that’ll be me!” “Wow Santa” I said. “That’s a really neat story and it’s now pretty easy for even me to understand.” Santa put his fork down, took a sip of hot chocolate and looked at Snowflake and said, “Well what are you two going to do the rest of the day,” Santa said, leaning back in his chair and placing both his big hands up on the back of his head. She looked at me and said, “Well, we've just about seen everything except the Toy Storage Warehouses and the Staging area. Does that sound like something you’d like to see, Elmo?” she asked. “You can bet it does,” I replied. “I’d really like to see all the completed toys and where they’re stored for delivery, but what’s the ‘Staging area,” I asked? Santa said, “I think that’s a very good idea Snowflake; I believe he’ll be impressed with the way each manifest is handled and how we load the toys into the sleigh.” Then Santa looked at me and said, “Now Elmo, I want you to tell me what those Santa’s are saying and what questions they may have so you can get answers for them. After all, every boy and girl deserves to know how all this comes about. Because there are so many Santa’s Helper's providing the answers to the questions they ask, it would be smart if they all gave the same answer to each question. Boy, would that ever get Christmas back on track” he concluded? Next week, Elmo tours the Storage Warehouses and the Christmas Eve Staging areas.
  8. Ol Santa

    North Pole Report # 8

    Report # 8 ClausNet July 7, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf Just like those that preceded it, this report was put together to help give you some logical ideas to formulate your answer to the questions youngsters may ask you. That’s happened to all of us, but by reading these stories, you will at least have a foundation to build a logical answer to satisfy some child’s curiosity. The more of them you read, the better prepared we believe you’ll be when that moment arrives. Elmo D. Elf, Editor in Chief of The North Pole Sun has prepared this week’s Toy Production Report. Then a continuation of our story follows. Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+-) Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 56.7% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 56.7% +.01 Video Games & Electronics 56.9% + .03 Blocks, Lego's, Erector Set 57.0% +.04 Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 55.0% - 1.9* Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 56.6% - 0 - Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc. 56.6% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars & Boats 57.1% +.05 . Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 56.9% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Bk’s 56.6% - 0 - Sports Gear, Trading Cards 56.6% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 56.6% - 0 - * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Break down Santa, do you still have a ‘good kid and bad kid list’? A brief recap: Thanks to ClausNet, I’ve had the opportunity to visit the Claus Complex that’s actually at the North Pole. I live in North Pole City, which is four miles south of the Pole. Santa and his Chief Elf Snowflake have shown me through almost everything. The Toy Shop, the Elves Dormitory, the Reindeer Barn, the Sleigh Hangar and the Snow Tunnel, but I still have a lot to learn. For example: The good and bad kids list; is it still in use? How does Santa keep track of all that? How does he get to all the good kids houses in just one night? We’ll be getting answers to all that and more in the next few weeks…so you really need to keep reading every North Pole Report just in case you need a little “refresher”. You know what I mean? We’ll pick up the story where we left off last time. It was almost 11:00 PM when we left the Hangar after a fascinating tour of Santa’s new ‘Stealth Sleigh’ as well as the two he had been using for 25 years; the Freighter and his personal sleigh. It had been quite a night. As we reached the Elves Dormitory stairway, Santa said, “Well I’ll be seeing you on Friday Evening Elmo, just come here to the Dorm and check-in with Snowflake, she will have found an empty room for you”. Snowflake said, “Aren’t you going to walk Elmo to the door?” Santa’s reply was, “Nah, you kids just run along; good night. Be careful on your way home Elmo.” Snowflake and I walked through the Lobby, past the Game Room; which had quieted down considerably by then, and we said good night to one another at the door and I was on my way. As my snowmobile started to move, it became obvious the rascally young Elves had come out with several rolls of bathroom tissue and had tepeed my machine. I looked up at the building and sure enough there they were waving and grinning with their round faces in nearly every window. I couldn't help but laugh, so I just kept on going south toward North Pole City. On Friday, I called Snowflake as I had promised. Henrietta at the City’s Phone Company didn't handle the call so there were no problems getting through. Snowflake was her usual cheery self and she agreed to meet me at 6:30 in the Lobby of the Elves Dormitory and show me to an empty room for the weekend as Santa requested. I sure felt a lot better being with some of my own kind (Elves) than staying in that great big house with the Claus’s. Those tall chairs, beds and even the big ol’ steps were a turn off, I guess; although sliding down the banister was a hoot! I left the Newspaper Office shortly after 5:00 PM (NPT), rushed home and packed a soft side bag with my razor, tooth brush, toiletries, a couple changes of clothes and an extra pair of turned up toe shoes. I fed “Boots” my cat his meat; left him plenty of water and dry cat food and opened the drapes so he could watch any action outside along the street. I took my snowmobile down to the Drug Store and ordered some more chocolates for Snowflake. “Doc the Druggist” smiled at me and said “Elmo, have you developed a sweet tooth lately, or are you trying to give someone you know a sweet tooth?” That disgusted me, but I answered anyway saying, “No, it’s just a little ‘thank you’ to a business acquaintance”. His reply as he winked at me was “Snowflake prefers the ‘Chocolate Covered Cherries’. Would you like to take a box of those instead?” “Sure”, I said, “Why not?” After paying for the candy, I mounted my snowmobile and headed straight North thinking ‘everyone in town will be talking about this’. I thought, ‘I ought to do an Editorial about 'nosy people’; then I got to thinking ‘how am I going to tell Snowflake that people in town are talking about us?’ Then I just decided to let things run their course and blew it off. As I walked into the Elves Dorm nearly all the Elves I encountered said “Hello” or “Hi” and a bunch of them even called me by name. “Oh well.” Snowflake met me and I handed her the Chocolate Covered Cherries. She smiled and said, “You've become quite popular around here.” “Yeah”, I said. “It’s almost as bad in town.” “Really”, she replied; “Boy, word really gets around, doesn't it?” We took the elevator to the 7th Floor and stepped out into a long hall. “The room’s right down here across from the lounge. There will be Hot Chocolate and biscotti’s in there Saturday and Sunday as well as the latest North Pole Sun. That way the second shift can sleep late and still get something to eat.” she said “Boy”, I said, “this is really nice!” I each room there was an Elf sized bed, a desk with a computer, a B&W TV, a desk chair, a lamp and an overstuffed chair for reading. The closet had rods that could be easily reached, appropriate sized hangers and two shoe racks. On the back of the door was a full length mirror. I looked out of the window and there was a great view of North Pole City and even the airport. Snowflake looked at me and said, “There’s everything we need in this building; Santa wanted us all to be very happy here and believe me, we are! Now Elmo”, she continued, “the Men’s Room is to your right as you exit the room. Just ask anyone when you go down there. They will assign a lavatory and a chest to you and you’ll feel just like one of us.” Then she handed me the key saying “You really don’t need this but it may make you feel better. “Let’s go eat dinner and then Santa has asked that I show you the Communications Center, okay?” After we ate, we walked back through the lobby to the Snow Tunnel and turned to the left toward the Toy Shop, up the stairs and back among all the machines and conveyors to a Door with a painted sign on the window stating “Communications Center.” As we entered, the 21 girl Elves in there that Snowflake had mentioned on the way over were obviously far too busy to visit, talking into and listening to their head sets. Snowflake explained, “When you were here Wednesday, you asked about the ‘Good Kid and Bad Kid Lists’ right?” I shook my head “yes”. “And you've heard us mention the ‘Remote Elves’ too, haven’t you Elmo?” “Yes” I replied. Well there are hundreds and hundreds of Remote Elves scattered all over the world. Each one checks on about 100 kids every day and they check on each one about 8 – 10 time every day. Well, back before there were cell phones, satellites and computers, the Remote Elves, every time they saw one of the kids they were responsible for do something wrong they called in by short wave radio. Back in those days here at the North Pole there were a bunch of Elf Scribes that sat on old wooden stools receiving the radio messages working with the Good Kid & Bad Kid Books; one book for each town. It was terribly time consuming; not totally accurate, and Santa felt it was just a terrible waste of a good Elf’s time. Besides, he continually had to be referring to them and that cost him valuable time on his annual Toy Runs. It was also a problem because as he flew through the sky in that old open sleigh, sometimes the wind would blow the books open in the back seat where he carried them and pages would start blowing out…oh, it was a mess…not a good system at all”. “Wow” I exclaimed, “What’d he do?” “Well, just as with the Stealth Sleigh; Santa called a meeting and they all sat down and talked” she said. “Wait a minute,” I interrupted. “You said ‘They’…who was ‘they’ and were you there?” “It was Santa’s most trusted Elves at that time, and no, I wasn't involved yet because I was one of those Remote Elves. I was down in Perth, Australia.” “Do you mean to tell me you were an ‘Aussie’ for a while?” “Yes, I was; and living there was really nice, she said. But anyway, they've converted everything to modern day communications up here.” “It works like this. Every Remote Elf has a cell phone. At the end of each day they call in here to the Communication Center and report any child who gets a bad mark for misbehaving; like talking back, laying on the floor kicking and screaming, you know; all that kind of thing. Every boy or girl is listed in these computers to start the year but AS SOON AS THEY GET FIVE BAD MARKS, THEY ARE REMOVED FROM THE GOOD KIDS LIST on the computer and deleted for the rest of the year.” “Wow, that’s kind of final isn't it?” I asked. Snowflake agreed, “That’s why children should all be good, because you never really know when the Remote Elves are watching. But that’s only part of the improvement.” “There’s more,” I inquired? “Yes, a whole lot more” she went on. “You see Elmo, up to the minute information is extremely important as the Earth’s population continues increasing. For example, if Santa were to take an up to date computer disc and use it during the deliveries he’s making, there’re some kids who might continue to be bad even on Christmas Eve. If they got their 5th black mark after Santa left the North Pole with that computer disc, he’d still deliver them toys because the latest information he has indicates they hadn't gotten their 5th black mark yet. “Well, that certainly isn't fair is it? I remarked. So how’d you fix that?” “Well, there are these new Communications Satellites that transmit both voice and data. Aboard the new Stealth Sleigh the computer is tied in with the GPS System that uses those Satellites.” “Okay, I remember” I said. “Now”, she continued, “When the GPS is switched on, the sleighs position is known not only on the sleigh, but also up here at the North Pole because the sleigh’s computer is connected by satellite to this computer.” “By satellite, that’s amazing,” I concluded, “but why do you have to know that?” “Well, we really don’t need to know, but the program we use actually tells Santa what our computer up here has on the screen and based upon his GPS he knows which kids rooftop he’s sitting on, the kids name, what they want for Christmas and a whole bunch of other stuff.” “Like what?’’ I asked. “Okay, look right here. This boy has a dog named ‘Laddie’, so Santa knows to be quiet and careful so he won’t step on the dog’s tail. Look here; she said, according to this, we know Laddie doesn't bite.” “Laddie doesn't bite! Wow, that’s good information for Santa to have. I can’t believe how sophisticated this system is! What else does it do?,” I inquired. Her reply was, “Remember the computer screens in the aft compartment of the Stealth Sleigh?” “Yes” was my reply. “Those screens show the toy puller Elves in the back of the sleigh what needs to go into each Santa’s Sack for the next four houses where he’s scheduled to stop, so he doesn't have to wait or waste time. That lets him stay on schedule.” “Gee, that’s wonderful”, I replied, “But there’s something I’ve been meaning to ask, and that’s why does Santa carry the Reindeer in the Stealth Sleigh?” “You know Elmo, that’s something we should have told you the other night. You haven’t been losing sleep worrying about that have you?” she smiled. “No, but I just couldn't figure it out.” I said. “We don’t really need them at all because we doubt that we’ll ever use them, but as you already know Santa believes in having plenty of back-up systems, just in case. In a worst case scenario, let’s say the engines died on the Sleigh while it’s parked on somebody’s rooftop. He wouldn't want it to just sit there would he? Of course not, so with the Reindeer already there, Santa would be gone in 5 or 10 minutes.” “Well, what difference would it make, it’s invisible isn't it?” I asked. “Yes Elmo, it is invisible,” came her reply, “but only at night. It’s dark gray for nighttime operations, remember. But in daylight it would stand out like a huge dark gray sleigh…’cause that’s what it is.” “It appears to me as if you folks have thought of everything,” I said. “Well, we’ll know for sure on Christmas Eve”, she said. “There may be a few rough edges to smooth out, but as far as we know, everything’s been considered and a solution for everything has been developed.” Then Snowflake turned and walked through another door and I followed. “This is The Mail Room she said. It receives both regular mail and the newer electronic mail year round but it really gets heavy in November and December. These scanners here, read each piece of mail and if it includes an individual toy request or a whole list of things a child wants, it automatically transfers that information to the main computer you saw working next door…” “Oh, I see; so no matter how each child transmits what he wants for Christmas, it still ends up on the main computer and that’s what the Elves aboard the Stealth Sleigh use to fill the sack Santa will take down the Chimney when he gets to their house. That’s cool I said.” “You’re almost right, Elmo,” she said. “Almost” I replied. “Yes, the bad kids aren't listed in the computer, remember. So if their name is not still in the computer, their request for toys is dumped! It’s a fool proof system.” “Man, oh man!” I said, “If the kids knew how this system works, I’ll bet they’d all be good all year long”. “That’s right Elmo; that’s why you’re here to get the story out.” Elmo’s Visit Next Week gets the Answer to the Question; “How Do You Get to Everyone’s House in One Night?”
  9. Ol Santa

    North Pole Report #7

    Report # 7 ClausNet June 30, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf These North Pole Reports have been put together not only to advise interested parties of the current status of Santa’s toy Production; but to help give you some logical ideas with which to answer questions from youngsters should they ask one for which you’re not quite prepared. It happens to all of us, but by becoming familiar with these stories, you may satisfy some child’s curiosity. Elmo D. Elf, Editor of The North Pole Sun prepares this week’s Toy Production Report. Further exploits of Elmo will follow. Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+-) Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 54.1% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 54.1% + .01 Video Games & Electronics 54.3% + .03 Blocks, Legos, Erector Set 54.4% + .04 Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 52.3% - 2.0* Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 54.0% - 0 - Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc.54.0% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars, Boats 54.5% + .05 Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 54.3% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Bk’s 54.0% - 0 - Sports Gear, Trading Cards 54.0% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 54.0% - 0 - * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Breakdown “Santa, Does your sleigh really fly?” A brief recap: Santa and Snowflake, his Chief Elf up there at the Claus Complex at the North Pole have taken me through the Toy Shop, the Packaging Department, the Elves Dormitory, the Barn where I met Ike the Elf who trains the Reindeer to fly, I learned of the “North Pole” and even Rudolph’s red nose. So in today’s report, I’m going to tell you about the New Sleigh, all kids want to see Santa Sleigh; and how he gets to everyone’s house in just one night. After we had all eaten as much of that deep dish cherry pie Ala mode as we could handle, I said that it was time for me to go. Walking to the front door Snowflake said, “The Elves and I would be delighted if you’d come back and have dinner with us out in the Dormitory one evening real soon.” Then Santa said “Good idea Elmo, in fact, why not make it on a Wednesday evening. I go out about 8:00 PM. It’s always a lot of fun.” I pulled on my heavy winter snow pants as Snowflake handed me my Parka and said, “Please come back real soon; we’d love to have you.” “Let me get this next report off to ClausNet,” I said, looking at Santa; I’ll give you a call to set up a time; okay?” Snowflake called after me, “I’m in the Phone Book Elmo!” I brushed 5-6 inches of snow off the snowmobile tarp; folded it and tucked it in the storage area; put on my goggles; threw my leg over the seat and fired ‘her’ up. It roared to life. I looked toward the house and saw Santa and Snowflake watching and waving at me as Mrs. Claus turned away and headed down the hall. I thought to myself ‘What a great evening and how lucky I am to spend it with such fine people.” As I sped away heading south toward North Pole City with its lights twinkling in the distance, I thought about the upcoming Wednesday and realized I had a dinner meeting with some stockholders of the newspaper. As much as I wanted to cancel that, I felt the smart thing to do was to mark the Wednesday following that meeting as the best time to return to the Claus Complex. I thought to myself, ‘I got to remember to mark my schedule book first thing in the morning’. The Friday following my Stockholders meeting, I couldn't contain myself any longer and decided to call The Claus Complex and ask for Santa, knowing full well that Snowflake would be answering his phone. I turned the crank on the side of the phone box and Henrietta, one of the Elves at NP Phone Company responded. I said in my best business voice, “I need to talk with Santa Claus at the Claus Complex.” One moment pleaseee,” she said. I waited as the phone began to ring and then I heard Snowflake answered saying, “Merry Christmas; North Pole; Snowflake, Chief Elf speaking.” Henrietta said, “Hi Snowflake, how’s everything going?” Snowflake answered, “Oh Henrietta, you wouldn't believe what’s happened; one of our suppliers in Brazil has shipped the wrong wheels for the new ‘Super Speed Skate Boards.’ They think they can ship the right wheels tonight, because if they don’t, we’ll be in a world of hurt! Santa just hates to have to substitute…feeling children should get the things they want most at Christmas.” Henrietta said “Golly Snowflake, what’cha going to do?” “Oh, like always,” she said, “I’ll apply a little pressure and prey a lot!” “Good luck with that,” Henrietta said. “I've got Elmo D. Elf from the Newspaper wanting to talk to Santa.” Snowflake replied, “Oh, hello Elmo, how are you?…that’s okay Henrietta, I’ll handle this call” “But he said he wants to…” Henrietta protested. “Thank you Henrietta” I said. “Good-bye Henrietta; nice talking to you.” Snowflake added. There was a pause, and then we heard a click as Henrietta got off the line. Snowflake said, “I suppose she’s off the line Elmo, when are you coming up for dinner?” It’s a good thing this wasn't a Skype call or she’d see me blushing as bad as Rudolph. “Well, I was thinking about Wednesday this next week.” “Oh,” she replied. “Well remember,” I said, “Santa wanted me to come up on a Wednesday for ‘Game Night’, so”… “Yes, I know,” she said “and I’m sure that will be alright; he’s always home this time of year. He’s speaks at some convention in October. Then he does his Market Research as the Elves near completion of The Christmas toys in December.” “You say he does market research?” I inquired. “Yes, he goes to Texas and talks with the good boys and girls to see what they want for Christmas. By talking to a small sampling of children, he can multiply that by what he calls his ‘fudge factor’ and then he knows how many of each toy to make. Then he adds .002% for safety reasons. We’ve only had problems twice…once in ‘86 when we produced too many baby buggies and again in 2007 when we ran out of Wii Electronic Games,” she finished. “Well, as much as I’d like to come out earlier,” I said, “let’s set it for 6:30 PM at the Dorm. I’ll meet you in the lobby across from the Cafeteria, okay?” “That’s a date” was her reply. “See you then, I replied.” On Wednesday evening I arrived promptly at 6:30 PM with another big box of chocolates. Upon entered the Dorm I found a seat across from the Cafeteria. Elves were coming and going all around me and over in the Game Room, you could hear folks talking, laughing politely and billiard balls clicking against one another, so the Game Night for Santa was getting under way. Several folks that I knew stopped by for short visits. I found myself thinking about the Elves having to walk the four miles to the Complex only 25 - 30 short years ago. My, how times have changed. When I looked up; there she stood; Snowflake in another beautiful dress; not her usual green tunic and black leotard. She said, “Hi Elmo, I’m so glad you could make it. Do you realize it’s been 1 ½ weeks since we’ve seen each other?” “Ahhh, Oh sure” I said, obviously embarrassed and handing her the chocolates. By this time, I was on my feet. “How nice you look,” I said. “Thank you” she said as she took my hand and said, “Owww, Your hand’s are cold; let’s go get a bite to eat.” We walked into the Cafeteria and she said, “Since this is your first time in here, you follow me…you’ll get the hang of it.” We each took a tray and walked to the serving line and she just continued to chatter about what she was going to eat. I really don’t remember much of anything else. She introduced me to some of her friends and I just tried to be cordial. After we ate, we walked outside to one of the conversation pits and sat down on a big overstuffed couch, and she asked “Now, just what would you like to talk about tonight?” “I believe that Santa is going to tell me about the sleighs tonight,” I replied. “Well he’s already in there with some of the Toy Makers, but we can get started and we’ll let him sort of wrap it all up when he finishes his card; Monopoly or checkers games; or whatever they’re playing. Well Elmo, first off, we have four sleighs…well actually five if we count the new Jet Sleigh. That’s Santa’s pride and joy, so I’ll let him tell you about it when he shows it to you, ‘because he’ll certainly want to do that! First off, we have a very small sleigh that Santa uses on personal business. It’s open air and got room for only two people in a single seat. It’s bright red with golden trim and filigree. He and Mrs. Claus use it when they go on vacation; or when he goes somewhere on business, you know like to a convention; to a supplier or to Texas to do his Market Research,” she said. “Does he ever fly out of North Pole City on a jet plane,” I asked. “Hardly at all,” was the reply. “He says he hates regular air travel. He says ‘It takes too long what with the changing of planes and long waits in airports’…he feels it’s just plain inconvenient, she said.” “Well if he goes to Tahiti or Texas, where’s he park the sleigh and what does he do with the Reindeer,” I inquired. “Elmo,” she giggled. “Those are the same questions that children usually ask Santa.” “Sorry,” I replied. “No, no, that’s alright, she said. When he’s at that Shopping Center in Texas, for example; Santa tells the kids, ‘Well I used to park my sleigh and the Reindeer in the Parking Lot where you and your Mom parked your car today…but a few years ago, some teen agers were on their way home from school; and when they saw the sleigh, they started running toward it to pet the Reindeer and see the sleigh. Anyway, the Reindeer started bucking and jumping! He had to rush out there to explain to the kids that the Reindeer aren’t used to seeing boys and girls; only the Elves. So that’s why the Reindeer reacted like that. Then he asked the children to move back and everything was okay. But when he got home that night, he told Mrs. Claus what had happened and she just said, ‘well Santa, why don’t you just start parking on the roof and climb down one of those ladders they have there?’ ”Does that satisfy the kid’s curiosity?” I asked. Snowflake smiled and said, “Usually…but once in a while they want to go climb that latter and get a look at the sleigh and Reindeer. So then Santa has to explain about Insurance problems and City Ordinances and stuff like that.” She snickered and said. “When that happens, Santa sometimes takes anyone who wants to see the ladder and the Trap Door we use to come off the roof; and explains ‘that’s about 25’ feet and you wouldn't want to fall down from there, would you?’ That usually ends that discussion.” “You said there were four sleighs plus the jet powered one. So tell me about the other three non-jet sleighs before Santa takes me to see the new one,” I said. She thought a second and said, “Two of them are about as big a Box Car you might see pictured in a book about American Railroads. Those are what Santa normally has used to deliver toys on Christmas Eve the past 20 - 25 years, but with the world’s population growing so rapidly, we've had to make more and more trips to deliver enough toys for all the good boys and girls, and you know he must be finished before it gets daylight” she finished. I sat and thought for a minute and before I could say anything, she said, “It’s been a real problem for us” “You said there were four, I said. So tell me about the last one.” “Well it’s about the size of the two that we alternate to deliver toys on Christmas Eve. We can use it for deliveries too, but mostly, it’s a freighter. Remember when I was talking to Henrietta on the phone the other day?” “Yes”, I said. “That Supplier sent the wrong wheels; he’s located in Brazil…well we just packed up the wrong wheels and hauled them to Brazil and then, they loaded the right wheels in it and we had them up here the next morning, and we’re back on schedule!” “Well, it’s coming up on 9:30 NPT (that’s North Pole Time) she said. I hear a lot of whooping and hollering in the Game Room, so he’ll be here any minute. In the meantime, I can explain why we decided to get the new sleigh, okay?” “We’ve already discussed the world’s population growing so fast, right? Well we understand that not every child will be classified as a ‘Good Kid”. “Do you mean on Santa’s ‘Good Kid List’? I asked. “Oh, no we don’t use lists anymore,” she answered, “We are totally computerized on everything now. I’ll tell you about that next time we’re together!” “That’ll be great,” was my reply. “While the world’s the same size, every year there are more good kids. That means more stops and more trips back up here to get another load of toys. So since Santa can’t run across rooftops any faster, we were trying to figure how save some time. Santa called a meeting and a bunch of us began talking about how best to save time. Mrs. Claus wanted Santa to lose weight so he could run faster; Ike thought maybe the Reindeer could go faster if all the toys were made of titanium or plastic and stuff like that. Well I remembered receiving a new sleigh catalog from Sebastian Sleigh Works down in Sweden. They were making a new ‘Stealth Jet Propelled Sleigh’ that goes twice as fast as the Reindeer can pull a sleigh and it’s bigger too.” “Wow!” I said, “That’s fantastic.” “Santa and I went down to see them and he decided to get one. We both learned to drive it and we’re ready to go. Since then he’s taken Mrs. Claus for a couple of rides and we've taught several of the other Elves to drive it. It’s nice, warm, without all the wind in the face and because it travels so fast, those return trips won’t hurt the situation one bit…besides Santa had it designed to look like a sleigh. About that time we heard Santa laughing and shouting to his Elf friends, “Well now you guys know how it feels to get ‘skunked’ in a game of checkers, Oh, ho, ho !” Then he appeared and came over to where we were sitting, saying “Hello Elmo, how are you?” Sitting down, he chatted with us a minute; then Snowflake told him what she’d told me. Santa struggled to his feet he said, “Let’s go see it.” We walked through the Snow Tunnel, past the Barn to another Stairway with a plaque at the top that said “Hanger”. As we walked through the door there it was; a huge, dark grey, sleigh shaped thing with a folding stairway leading up into it. Santa, with those long strides of his said, “Come on up.” and we followed. He turned right and walked past a doorway with a plaque that read ‘Stalls’ through a doorway indicating ‘Cockpit’; he took the left seat and motioned for me to sit in the right side seat. Snowflake sat in the Center seat. “Wow” I said, “It’s so big; but won’t it crush a house?” That’s what I first thought was, but the Sebastian Sleigh folks explained it this way. This dark grey paint makes it virtually invisible at night, right?” “Uh huh” was my reply. “Well then, if you can’t see it then there must be nothing there, okay?” “Okay”, I agreed. Then he asked the clincher…”Well then if you can’t see it, and you agree there’s nothing there, then how much does nothing weigh?” I sat there and realized I had no answer for that one. “Well what about all the Toys,” I asked. That’s simple, “When they’re inside this baby, they’re in stealth too! Why when we land it out in the snow…it doesn’t even leave any tracks!” I looked at Snowflake and all she was doing was smiling and shaking her head up and down! Santa walked me to the back, and showed me the stalls where the Reindeer ride; then into the aft compartment; that took my breath away. It was a virtual warehouse in which to store toys. Then he said, “It’s late and you have to get back to North Pole City, tonight. How about coming up on Friday evening and planning to spend the weekend in the Elves Dorm…there’s some space there isn't there Snowflake?” “You bet there is,” was her reply. Next week Elmo learns how the Jet Sleigh will operate on Christmas Eve and all about the New Operations Center.
  10. Ol Santa

    North Pole Report # 6

    Report # 6 ClausNet June 23, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf This Report has been put together to help give you some logical ideas with which to answer youngsters questions should they ask one for which you’re not quite prepared. It happens to all of us, but at least if you can remember a bit of these stories it may help you satisfy each child’s curiosity. The more of them you read, the better prepared you’ll be when that moment arrives; okay? Elmo D. Elf, Editor in Chief of The North Pole Sun has prepared this week’s Toy Production Report. Then a continuation of our story follows. Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+- ) Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 51.5% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 51.5% + .01 Video Games & Electronics 51.7% + .03 Blocks, Legos, Erector Set 51.8% + .04 Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 49.7% * -1.09 Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 51.4% - 0 - Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc. 51.4% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars, Boats 51.9% + .05 Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 51.7% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Bk’s 51.4% - 0 - Sports Gear, Trading Cards 51.4% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 51’4% - 0 - * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Breakdown . "Santa, Please tell me why Rudolph’s nose turns red?” A Continuation from Last Week’s North Pole Report # 5 A brief recap: Santa and Snowflake, his Chief Elf up here at the Claus Complex at the North Pole have taken me through the Toy Shop, the Packaging Department, through the big Snow Tunnel that connects everything up there to keep these folks out of the bad weather; I've met Ike the Elf who trains the Reindeer to fly and now Santa’s going to tell me if there really is a Pole at the North Pole and what it’s used for as well as how and why Rudolph’s nose turns red and actually glows. It’s really been a very interesting time for me because even though I live up here near the North Pole, I had never expected to learn this much about how Christmas happens as far as Santa delivering all the toys. . . “Wow, that’s really something!” I exclaimed as we began walking through the Snow Tunnel back toward Santa’s house after seeing the Reindeer fly. “Those are actually the Reindeer that pull your sleigh, huh Santa?” I asked. “Yes sir” he replied “but now Elmo, you have to remember that only 4 or 5 of them in each stall are fully trained…the other two or three will need ‘more seasoning” according to Ike.’ “Seasoning?” I said…”do you mean like salt and pepper?” “Not exactly” Snowflake said. “You see Elmo; Ike really means is that the newer Reindeer need more practice…more experience…more determination; to be fully capable and 100% reliable. After all, they are still ‘wild animals’ and we are expecting an awful lot out of them”, she explained. “Oh, I see,” I replied, “but when Santa said ‘seasoned’, I thought he meant like salt and pepper because I did see some great big blocks of salt in each stall. What’s that for?” “I think that’s to get them to drink plenty of water so they’ll grow bigger and stronger,” she said. “You can imagine how heavy that sleigh must be with Santa; a couple of Elves and a whole bunch of toys all loaded in it. There’s no room for any weakly little Reindeer here in Santa’s Barn, no sir.” After we had passed the Dormitory Stairway and were approaching the Claus Home, I noticed a great big round shiny silver pipe enter the tunnel’s roof and go straight down through the floor of the tunnel. That seemed sort of unusual to me so I said to Santa, “What’s that big shiny pipe there for…is that the pipe that takes the Hot Chocolate for the Elves out to the Toy Shop?” “No, Elmo my boy”, he said, “That’s just part of our Weather System.” “You’re Weather System? How does it work?” I queried. He stopped a second and looked at me; then said. “Well Elmo if the newspaper you run was as dependent upon the weather as my delivering the toys that good boys and girls have requested at Christmas, my guess is that you’d probably have a Weather Station too. You probably saw the weather maps scattered all over the table next to my chair in the parlor after we ate dinner and before heading out to the barn didn't you?” “Yes Sir, I did”, I replied. Now, in this business, you have to know what the weather’s doing all the time, because there are some parts for the toys we import to complete the toys we make and we have them sub-contracted out to company’s scattered all over the world. That’s one reason that UPS is so busy up here at North Pole International Airport. You know the UPS Elves that ride around on their brown snowmobiles in brown uniforms and parka’s? But the main reason we have to keep an eye on the weather is that on Christmas Eve, it can affect the way we make deliveries; which sled and which of the Reindeer we should use and a whole bunch of other things.” “Wow, I had no idea!” I said. “But what’s that piece of pipe and how is it part of the weather situation I asked again.” “Well, we have to have all kinds of weather equipment up here to do our job. That just happens to be a part of what has become known as the ‘North Pole”, or as we like to say; ‘The Pole at the North Pole”, he said. “Oh”, I said, thoroughly baffled. There was a pause in the conversation as I tried to figure out what Santa was talking about. Finally, he said, “I can tell you have no idea what I mean; but on your way up here this evening, did you happen to see that tall white pole sticking up real high with the red stripe going round and round?” “Uh huh” I replied. “It sort of looked like a candy cane or fancy flag pole…does it have some kind of blinking red light on the top to help you find your way home.” “No”, was the reply, “it’s got nothing to do with that kind of stuff. With the Reindeer leading the way, I don’t have to worry about that”, he said, “They’re rushing home to get some more of Ike’s granola!” My only reply had to be, “Well then, I haven’t even got a clue.” By this time we had reached the bottom of the Stairway from the Snow Tunnel up into the Claus home, Santa had already mounted the first step. He said to Snowflake and I, “Come on in and while Mrs. Claus fixes that Cherry Pie Ala mode, I’ll take you up stairs and you can see what it’s used for.” “I’ll give Mrs. Claus a hand with the desserts”, Snowflake said. “I already know all about that!” I followed Santa back down that long hall to the stairway up to the second floor. I thought to myself, “Boy, these sure are tall steps”. Santa had to have heard me; he giggled and said “They’re the standard 8” riser all over the complex and you’re right, they should have been 6” with all you folks working around here.” “Oh, I see” was my reply. Then Santa said, “You see Elmo, it’s my regular morning routine to get up; pull on my house coat; put my feet in my slippers; walk over to the window and raise the window shade. Come on over here and tell me what you see.” I stood up on my tip-toes and just outside the window was that thing; that pole with the red stripe on it. This time of year it never gets fully dark…but there’s no direct sunlight. Santa grabbed me by the seat of my pants and hoisted me up to peer out the window at the candy cane colored pole. He asked, “Do you see it?” “What?” I asked. “That striped pole…it’s the ‘Snow Depth Gage’ so I’ll know exactly how deep the snow is,” he said. I looked again and said, “Okay, but how does it work?” I asked. “That’s what I expected you to ask, but it’s really quite simple. You see, the stripe drops exactly 1’-0” each time it goes around the pole; so by knowing the pole sticks out of the surface of the ice 60’-0”; all I have to know is how many times the stripe goes around the pole before it gets to the snow. Go ahead and count the number of times it comes around the pole.” “I started counting; then told Santa I got 32.” “Good” he replied, “Now just subtract 32’ from the 60’ foot height of the pole.” I thought for a couple of seconds and blurted out, “28; so the actual depth of the snow above the ice is 28 feet deep…right,” I asked. “You got it my good man!” was his reply. “Gee, that’s really neat.” Then he placed my feet back on the floor, and said “Come on, let’s go get some dessert”, and headed toward the door saying, “now, before you leave here tonight, I want you to be absolutely up to date on ‘all things Rudolph’, okay?” As we reached to top of the stairway, Santa stopped, smiled and said “You’ve got a choice here Elmo. Now because these steps are so big, you can jump off each step as we go down; or you can do what most other Elves do and just slide down the bannister; What’s it going to be?.” “I believe I’ll just take the bannister, if that’s alright with you?” I replied. But before I could climb up and throw a leg over, Santa whisked me up; sat me on the rail, saying “Watch out for that big post at the bottom” and away I went, speeding toward the hallway below. Upon reaching the bottom, I dismounted the railing and waited for Santa. As I stood there waiting, I looked up and was even more amazed at the size of this man. We walked together back again through the hall and into the dining room. Santa motioned again to the same chair I had used during dinner. About that time Mrs. Claus entered being followed by Snowflake, each carrying two gigantic slices of very deep dish cherry pie with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on three of them and one with two scoops for Santa. I had to speak up and say, “I’ll never be able to eat all of this!” Snowflake spoke up and said, “Elmo, I tried to have one of these pieces cut in half for you and me, but…” “I just told her that the pie was cut like this so there’d be no leftovers!” Mrs. Claus interrupted. “Besides”, tomorrow is peach cobbler night. And if we don’t eat the desserts as I bake them, they’d start stacking up on us and Santa would be down here raiding the ice box a couple times every night!” Santa looked at me and winked. Then with a smile on his face he said, “It’s the only way I can cut back, don’t you know.” “This is the best cherry pie I’ve ever eaten,” I said. Then Snowflake explained, “The Cooks and Pastry Chef’s in the Dorm Cafeteria use Mrs. Claus recipes for everything served out there. That’s the main reason we never have any trouble hiring help when we need it. You ought to come out some evening and have dinner over there with all of us and then we could show you some more interesting things like our new jet propelled sleigh…or how we load the sleigh on Christmas Eve and stuff like that. I think you’d find it very interesting.” “Um, um, um, this is really good ‘dumplin’,” Santa said as he scarfed down his last big bite. When Santa finished, he looked at me and said; “What we’re we talking about?” I had my mouth full pie and ice cream so Snowflake interjected, “We were going to talk about Rudolph, Santa.” “Oh yeah, so we were, so we were.” Santa began, “Elmo, let me start by saying this is all true. I suppose you've heard the song about ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’…and how he was kind of small and stand-offish when we first bought him up here. He was such a cute little “fella” and I just couldn’t leave him down at Lars Swenson’s place in Lapp Land to fend for himself; so even though Ike said we needed four Reindeer to keep the size of the herd up that year, I bought five home with me.” Snowflake added “He was the cutest thing I’d ever seen and the next day as Ike started trying to teach all five of the new arrivals how to fly, the little one would have nothing to do with it. He went over by the big rolling door and just stood there; his front legs crossed and jaw set as stubborn as could be. Santa pleaded with Ike to work with the ‘little fella’ but Ike wasn’t buying into it…was he Santa?” “No he wasn’t,” Santa said. “I asked Ike again to give him a chance; but Ike said he’ll never make the team and besides, he’s just too small. I’ll fool with him later, but I tell you one thing, he’s getting a different name that all the rest. I’m going to call him Rudolph.” Now according to Santa, all the older Reindeer were peering through the fences of their stalls and watching the proceedings just as they were tonight. First, they were smiling and then they started laughing and pointing and saying mean things about the stubborn little ‘fella’ standing over by the door. Well Rudolph was obviously very self-conscious about them starting to laugh; call him names and he began to get embarrassed. Santa said to me; “Elmo, have you ever been embarrassed?” “Yes sir, many times,” I replied. “Well what happens to you when you’re embarrassed?” he asked. “Well, I know I can feel my face flushing and getting very red,” was my answer. “Well, just to prove to you how almost humanlike these Reindeer can be, just what do you suppose happened to little Rudolph,” he asked? “Aw, you don’t have to answer because I know exactly what you’re going to say. His face started to turn red, am I right?” “Yes sir” was my reply. Santa continued, “What happened next was that Ike was beginning to have some success and when the first of the new Reindeer leaped and found himself suspended in space, he hollered ‘Hey, look at me I’m Flying; I’m flying,’ Now, that little critter; I mean Rudolph; took off running and jumping and soared right up in the air and was galloping around the barn at a very fast pace.” “I couldn’t believe it.” Snowflake said. “Yeah,” Santa continued, “I asked Ike ‘How’d he fly so quickly?’ and Ike’s reply was ‘Well, he appears to be very fast and light on his feet, smart as a whip and he only weighs a couple hundred pounds, so I’d say it was a lot easier for him, I guess”. “Anyway,” Santa went on, “the next thing we noticed was that the nose of Rudolph was cherry red, just like those in this pie we just ate. It gave off an eerie glow, sort of lighting up the inside of the barn. Well when training was finished for the day, I went over to Rudolph and checked out that red spot on his nose. Well, to my surprise, not only was his nose glowing…but his entire face was just as red and shiny just like when you get embarrassed. The only difference is that all of his face is covered with fur except for his nose. So after we had trained him a couple of years just like the rest of the Reindeer, we used him to lead us on Christmas Eve with that nose just glowing. But he’s getting pretty old now.” “Well, does he still go every Christmas?” I asked. “You bet he does, except he rides in the front seat of the sleigh with me. He always has his seat belt fastened though. When we run into some really bad weather, we’ll hitch him up and he guides us through it…then when we come out on the other side, he’ll climb back up in the sleigh and sit next to me and we continue on our way”. “Man oh man, that’s really interesting.” I said. Then Santa finished the story by saying, “Elmo, do you know that for years people thought Rudolph had a red light bulb screwed in where his nose was supposed to be; or that he was a new breed of Reindeer or hundreds of other reasons for this phenonimum but he’s just a very sensitive and special Reindeer and that’s the reason people think his nose glows. “What a wonderful story” I said. Then Santa finished my sentence with, “And it’s all absolutely true”. Next week Elmo visits the Claus Complex again and see’s the new Jet Powered Sleigh.
  11. Ol Santa

    North Pole Report # 5

    Report # 5 ClausNet June 16, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf This Report, just like all the others, has been put together to help give you some logical ideas in which to answer youngsters questions should they ask one for which you’re not quite prepared. It happens to all of us, but at least you may remember a bit of these situations to help you satisfy each child’s curiosity. The more of them you read, the better prepared you’ll be when that moment arrives; so give them a try. Elmo D. Elf, Editor in Chief of The North Pole Sun is the ClausNet Correspondent will be preparing the Toy Report numbers each week. Then we’ll continue with our story. So here goes. Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+-) Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 48.9% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 48.9% + .01 Video Games & Electronics 49.1% + .03 Blocks, Legos, Erector Set 49.2% + .04 Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 47.0% - 2.0* Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 48.8% - 0 - Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc. 48.8% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars, Boats 49.3% + .05 Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 49.1% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Books 48.8% - 0 - Sports Gear, Trading Cards 48.8% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 48.8% - 0 - * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Breakdown “Santa, How do your Reindeer Fly?” A Continuation from Last Week’s North Pole Report # 4 A brief recap: You will recall I had gone out to the Claus Complex for dinner with Santa, Mrs. Claus and Snowflake, Santa’s Chief Elf. In our story, three weeks ago, I got to see the Snow Tunnel that connects all the Buildings up at the Claus Complex at the North Pole as well as Santa’s Toy Shop where he keeps all 386 of the Elves who make the toys busy. Two weeks ago, he told us about Gulliver, his great big ol’ St. Bernard and I got my first visit to the Elves Dormitory. This past week after dinner we started talking about the Reindeer. He told me a secret that really explained a lot; do you remember it was about why he has only eight Reindeer by name, but about 45 in all. You'll probably get asked that question a lot, so it may be a good idea to read it again! Anyway let’s pick up the story in Santa’s barn. I’ll tell you about what Ike the Elf told me about how he teaches the Reindeer to fly. Some Basic Fundamentals of Reindeer Ike, the Trainer of the Reindeer walked over to a stack of hay bales, sat down and motioned for us to do the same. After Santa, Snowflake and I were seated, Ike said ”Well, there are some things we need to deal with before we get started. For example, has Santa told you that sometimes when he talks to youngsters around the world they often ask him, ‘Can your Reindeer really fly?’ He says they're usually satisfied if he asks them this. ‘Well if you go to the Zoo with your parents and see the Reindeer behind a big fence, it stands to reason that if all Reindeer could fly, wouldn't those Reindeer all be gone by now?’ That’s just plain old logic Right?" And another thing kids often believe is that Reindeer come from up here at the North Pole. That just isn't so. I suppose you're aware that there are no natural Reindeer up here because the snow’s too deep and they'd not be able to move around so they'd just flounder and freeze, right?” I said “Well as much as I get around up here, I don't recall seeing any of them running loose, that I can remember.” Ike followed with, “Aw, most people think we're overrun with them, but Santa brings the only ones we have up here from Lappland.” “Lappland?” I said. “Yep” Ike said. “The Claus Family has got this good friend down there who's got the largest Reindeer Herd in the whole wide world. You do know where Lappland is don't you Elmo?” “Well, yes, I've heard of it before but I can't quite place where it is right now”, I said. Ike spoke right up with authority and said “Well, it’s not a country but it’s an area in northern Sweden, Norway and Finland…you know like the Ozarks in the United States or the Outback down in Australia”. Ike continued by saying, “Isn't that right Santa?” Santa said, “Of course, all that’s very true. You see Elmo, we have this longtime family friend named Lars Swenson and that’s where our Reindeer come from”. If we need a Reindeer or two, Ike here will advise me of that before we go out delivering toys on Christmas Eve. Then when we’re coming back after our last run, it’s usually just starting to get daylight and the Elves and I will stop at Lars’ place. He always invites us into his log cabin and we sit and enjoy a cup of hot chocolate with him and talk for a while.” Snowflake said, “I don’t know what he does when he makes his hot chocolate, but it’s really good.” “I believe he melts peppermint sticks in it, and you’re absolutely right, it is really good,” Santa said. “Anyway, after we finish our drink and get warmed up, Lars takes us outside and points out several of the best deer in his herd. After we pick out the number of new deer that Ike here has requested..." Ike blurted in at that point and said, “That’s when I go to work.” Santa continued by saying, “we load them in the sleigh and fasten their seat belts real good so they won't fall out and head for home. When we get here, I usually excuse the Elves so they can go to the Dormitory and get some rest and then I help Ike with the Reindeer.” “Yeah”, Ike interrupted again saying, “Santa always works with the experienced Reindeer that have been pulling the Sleigh; you know, talking to them, telling them what a great job they've done while petting and drying them off. I always take care of the new arrivals by getting them out of the sleigh into the spare stall where Gulliver stayed when he spent time with me while out here in the barn. Santa interrupted Ike and said, "Could we kind of move things along here Ike; Elmo here wants to hear everything about the Reindeer here tonight." “Oh sure Santa,” Ike continued. “The next day I usually go into the stall with the new Reindeer and feed them some of this hay we’re sitting on; some oats and just sort of talk so they get used to hearing my normal voice. Then, when they’ve settled in, I bring in some granola…you know, some of that stuff we all sometimes eat for breakfast, Elmo?” “Right” I said. Then Ike continued, “The Reindeer simply love that stuff! It’s like chocolate cake to them. After that, they really begin to like me, you know. That’s the way I am able to gain their confidence. After a few minutes, I open the stall gate and let them out so they can roam around here in the barn and get to know the place. After a couple of hours, I get some more of that granola and they come running to me. Now this is when their training really begins. I hold out a handful of granola and as they begin eating I talk with them about their flight up to the North Pole and ask if they would like to learn to fly? It’s always a resounding ‘yes’; so I tell them they must follow my instructions and do exactly as I say.” Flight training Begins “The Reindeer will listen intently for my command as I tell them I want them to run to the end of the barn and back ten times but only when I say ‘go’. Then I shout at the top of my lungs; ‘GO’ and they take off running. Now, the reason I do that is to get their muscles warmed up because it’s important that they be all warmed up and ready to go when it’s time to fly. Now, when they finish, I ask if they’re all warmed up” It was fun for me while listening to Ike, to look over into the stalls because every single Reindeer is watching and reacting to the proceedings almost as though they were human. Ike continued by saying, “Now this is where their training gets a little tricky because I shout out real loud; ‘Run and Jump’, and the new Reindeer take off and gallop a few steps and give a little hop. Gallop a little bit more and they hop again. It happens every time!” I looked again at the stalls. This time all the Reindeer were simply breaking up laughing and snorting. Then Ike said, “I always have to shout after them, ‘Jump’; what do you think you are, a bunch of bunny rabbits!” I looked at Santa and Snowflake. Santa was roaring with laughter and slapping his knee while S/nowflake had her hand over her mouth and giggled profusely! “But do you know what?” he asks. “No”, I replied. “Well they start with small jumps and seem to gain confidence and they start jumping higher and farther and higher and farther…until. He pauses for a few seconds and then says. “Now here’s where the tricky part starts”, Ike said. The Thin Air and Zero Gravity Effect Then Ike asked, “Elmo, you know we live in some pretty thin air up here at the North Pole, right?” “Yep” I said, “I know that because when I go cross country skiing, I can breathe a lot easier if I wear my oxygen mask, and I also know that with the weather reports we publish weekly in The North Pole Sun, our humidity is always very low like 1% or 2% at the most. That’s why, even in a snow storm, the snow squeaks under my feet as I walk even though I only weigh about 70 pounds”. Santa interrupted and said, “That was a great answer, Elmo”. I looked at Snowflake and she gave me a thumbs-up sign. I thought to myself ‘way to go’! Ike continued by asking, “Do you know what zero gravity is?” I thought about it a second or two and then said, “Yeah, that’s when there’s no gravity and things just sort of float around in space. Sometimes I see photos or Video come through the newspaper office from the Soviet and NASA Space Programs and they show things floating in space.” “Right again”’ Ike said. “Well, we do have zero gravity, or pretty close to it, up here at the North Pole.” At that point Santa said, “Watch this Elmo” as he started to climb to the top of the stack of hay bales on which we were sitting. After reaching the fourth row his hat began to float up off his head. But he reached up and got it before it floated away. “That’s zero gravity,” he said. “Now, the other day when we talked you implied the reason North Pole City couldn’t have an NBA Team was because there was no way the Elves could compete against those great big tall guys right? Well that may be true…but where would they change into their uniforms; eat or overnight…and what about someone shooting the ball toward the basket. Would the ball ever come down? Even though you folks don’t play football or baseball, the problem there would be the same. So it’s best you all just be happy with what you have”, he concluded while climbing back down and turning to Ike he said, “Please excuse me for interrupting.” Ike took a deep breath and then said, “Well Elmo, when the new Reindeer are running and jumping in here, I keep hollering, ‘Jump higher; jump higher’ and they do. Then all of the sudden one will go into zero gravity and it scares him at first; until he remembers what he’s been trying to do”. Then Ike says that Reindeer will shout out at the top of his lungs, ‘Hey…look at me, I’m flying, I’m flying!’ The others down on the ground will stop and look at each other and shout, ‘He is flying; wow!’ and they begin running faster and jumping higher so that before you know it they’re all up there floating around,” he concluded. “Fantastic." I said, so it is true that your Reindeer do fly, isn't it?” I asked. “Look Elmo", Ike said, “Santa believes that due to the thin air and the fact that our zero gravity is only 6 or 7 feet off the ground that our Reindeer can run faster and jump higher here than anywhere else on earth. So by our giving all of them a chance to fly every day, it actually builds their confidence so that by the end of a two year training period, they are absolutely confident that they can take-off from anywhere in the world. Isn't that about right Santa?” Ike asked. “Yep” Santa said, “that’s about the size of it.” Then Santa looked at me straight in the eye and said, “So you see Elmo, it’s absolutely true that when anyone has the confidence they can do something; if they work at it real hard and concentrate and then work at it some more, they can quite often accomplish whatever their goal might be. Why, just look at landing men on the moon and bringing them home safely. President Kennedy had the desire to see men do that and NASA accepted the challenge and made it happen. Look, we're only talking about Reindeer flying here, not sending people to the moon and back. Young boys and girls who really want to accomplish something; like learning to read or ride a bicycle or get better grades in school can do it if they do what these Reindeer do every day. They work and work at it, they gain confidence that they can accomplish their goal because they know they can do it, okay?. No if, and’s or buts!” Ike looked at Santa and as if pleading for permission Ol’ Santa said, “Well I don't see why not”, then he added “but let’s not use Rudolph, okay?” Ike looked at me and asked, “Any particular deer you'd like to see fly?” “Nope, not really” I replied. Ike went to the Vixen stall and asked, “Any of you guys want to take a few spins around the barn?” Before he had finished the sentence, there were three standing right there in front of him. He picked one that he referred to as “Vixen – 23” and turned him loose outside the stall so he could gather enough speed for a single big jump and away he went. Ike hollered after him “Not too fast, now.” Ike then took a bucket of granola and dumped in their trough. “I'll give ‘em all some treats because it’s about their snack time before they bed down for the night”. “Any more questions for Ike” Santa asked. “No” I replied “But I do want to know more about Rudolph.” Santa said “Thanks, Ike’. And turned to go back through the Snow Tunnel and said “Let’s go get some Cherry Pie Alamode.” I hollered over my shoulder and said “Thanks Ike” as we reached the Tunnel stairway. But we could hear him hollering at Vixen 23 to, “Come on down now, the fun’s over for tonight.” As we started through the Tunnel I asked “I’m wondering about Rudolph and his nose Santa. Can you explain that to me?” “We can discuss that over dessert, Okay?” was his reply. Then he said, “Snowflake, you can stop off at the Dorm if you want to or come on back to the house and have some dessert with Elmo and me…what’s it going to be?” All she said was, “Have you ever known me to miss out on some of Mrs. Claus’ desserts?” We’ll all learn all about Rudolph next time and some more interesting facts.
  12. Ol Santa

    North Pole Report # 4

    Report # 4 ClausNet June 9, 2014 North Pole Report Bi-Line - Elmo D. Elf On Friday, I had our Delivery Elf stop in at the Claus Complex to pick-up the information for this week’s report. He was advised to go to the back door of the Toy Shop and ask for “Snowflake”. Well, when he returned I just asked “Did you have any problems”? His only reply was, “No sir, but that Elf that handed me this stuff is very nice.” So I queried, “In what way?” All he could say was “She’s really, sort of cute!” as he stood there blushing. Hmmm, then it’s not just me I guess! Oh well, life goes on. Let’s get right to the Toy Report numbers and then we’ll continue with our story. So here goes. Toy Category % Complete (+-) Toy Category % Complete (+-) Bikes, Scooters, Sleds, Etc. 46.3% + .01 Dolls, & Bendable Figures 46.3% + .01 Video Games & Electronics 46.5% + .03 Blocks, Legos, Erector Set 46.6% + .04 Box, Card, Magic, Puzzle, 44.1% - 2.1* Doll Houses, Furn. Dishes 46.2% - 0 - Stuffed & Plush Animals Etc. 46.2% - 0 - Elect. Trains, Cars, Boats 46.7% + .05 Remote Cars, Boats, Planes 46.5% + .03 Read’g, Color’g, Game Bk’s 46.2% - 0 - Sports Gear, Trading Cards 46.2% - 0 - Miscellaneous Items 46.2% - 0 - * 6 ½ Days lost doe to Printing Press # 23 Breakdown Santa, Let’s Talk About Your Reindeer A Continuation from Last Week’s North Pole Report # 3 A brief recap: You will recall that Santa had invited me to have dinner with him and Mrs. Claus. To help complete the details, he had also invited Snowflake the Elf. Two weeks ago, I got to see the Snow Tunnel that connects all the Buildings up at the Claus Complex at the North Pole as well as Santa’s Toy Shop where he keeps all 386 of the Elves who make the toys busy. Last week he told us about Gulliver, his great big ol’ St. Bernard and my visit to the Elves Dormitory before the start of dinner. So let’s pick up the story there and I’ll tell you about what else I learned from Santa and Snowflake. As we talked, we ate some of Mrs. Claus Baked Moose (it was delicious), I asked, “What about the reindeer, where are they?” “Well Elmo”, he replied, “We've not shown you the Barn yet, have we?” Snowflake added, “Or the Toy Warehouses, or the Sleigh, or explained about how we load it or a lot of other stuff, yet!” “But we’ll get to all that in time” Santa said. “Boy, all that will be great, but where do you keep all those things?” I repeated, “I haven’t seen any of those places yet. Even on my ride up here all I could see was the Dormitory and the red house. There were some mounds in the snow but those are just snow drifts aren't they?” Santa just looked at me and smiled and then he said, “Good Dinner ‘Dumplin’. Well Elmo, do you want to take a walk now; or do you want to have dessert?” I replied, “I’m stuffed to the gills…maybe pushing back from the table and stretching my legs might be a good thing.” Snowflake said “Why not let me help with the dishes Mrs. C?” “Okay dearie” said Mrs. Claus. I followed Santa into a big parlor with a huge fireplace, a comfortable looking recliner next to a table covered with maps, weather data and a big colorful Tiffney Lamp. Behind the lamp sat a radio, housed in a wooden case. On the other side of the table was a modest size rocking chair belonging to Mrs. Claus with colorful needle-point cushions on the seat and back. Hanging off one corner of the back was a bag obviously containing her knitting. Santa sat down in the recliner and motioned to a big wing back chair across from him and said to me, “Take a load off there Elmo”. I gave a big jump and pulled myself up into that big ol’ chair; then turned and looked at Santa. He said, “What you’ve seen so far is how we live up here at the North Pole and you have to admit, we’re pretty comfortable, wouldn't you agree?” “Uh huh”, I said. “Now, you asked about the reindeer”, said Santa. “Well I’m going to tell you a little secret here Elmo. You've heard that when taking off in the sleigh I call out the names of the reindeer; right?” “Yep”, I said. “Well,” he continued, “people think that those eight reindeer and Rudolph are all the reindeer we have up here”. “Yes” I said, “Isn't that true?” He looked me straight in the eye and asked, “What would I do if on some Christmas Eve, one of them got sick or maybe even died?” “Gee” I said “Could you still fly?” Santa smiled and said “As it stands today, I could…but that’s only because I have a backup plan.” “A back-up plan” I asked? “That’s right” he said. “You see Elmo; I have to be prepared for any emergency. The good children of the world deserve to get toys on Christmas; right? It’s my obligation. Said in another way, I am prepared because I have another Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen”. “Wow”, I said. “Do you have another Rudolph too? “No, because you see, Rudolph is a very special animal…there’s only been one of him since time began. “But, he’s out in the barn right now. You wanta’ go see him?” “You bet I do,” I said hopping off that tall chair. I followed Santa out into that long hall that leads to the kitchen and the Snow Tunnel. “We’ll be back in about 30 minutes ‘Dumplin,” Santa said as he yanked the door open. “Hold it a minute” Mrs. Claus said, “What about the Cherry Pie Alamode? And what about Snowflake; after all, she’s a guest here tonight too?” Santa looked at Snowflake and said, “You want to go with us?” She flushed a bit and said, “I’m helping with the dishes right now, but I can catch up”. “Oh no dearie”, Mrs. Claus said, “You go ahead and run along with the men.” “Oh, I couldn't do that,” replied Snowflake. But in a stern voice, Mrs. Claus said, “Snowflake, I insist.” Snowflake untied her apron and folded it neatly as Santa and I headed out the door. After completing the stairway, and turning to our right toward the Dormitory, Santa said, “You do know Elmo, that the Snow Tunnel runs in a big circle beneath the snow. It was built a couple hundred years ago by my Great, Great, Great, and Great Granddad. Because of it, we seldom go outside and that’s helped us cut way back in everybody getting colds. By staying healthy, we can keep up with the world’s population growth; we really can’t spare a single worker”. “Santa, when we were talking a few minutes ago, you said you have a few extra reindeer, isn't that right?” “Well not exactly Elmo. We do have extra reindeer; about 45 in all, just to prevent what we discussed a few minutes ago. Each wears a harness with one of the eight reindeer names on it. All of the 5 or 6 Dashers stay in the same large stall; same with the Dancers, and Comets, and Cupids; all of them in fact share a big stall with several other reindeer with the same name.” he explained. “I just don’t understand the reason for only eight names; couldn’t you think of any more different names?” Santa looked at Snowflake, winked and said, “You tell him, Hon!” She looked at me and said, “That’s a logical question Elmo, so don’t think it’s a dumb thing to ask. Look at it this way. Santa has enough on his plate to think about, so what he doesn't need is something like a bunch of different names when he’s flying off somebody’s roof. This way, if Dancer feels bad or gets sick, Santa can have Ike replace him with another animal with the same name. That way Santa always shouts out the same eight names in the same order and every reindeer knows exactly what to do. Does that make good sense to you?” “It sure does. That’s a pretty clever idea Santa,” I said. “Well, I wish I could take Credit for it,” he replied. We passed the Entrance of the Dormitory and Santa with his long strides was causing Snowflake and I to run about 4 or 5 steps after we walked 8 or 10 steps. When he realized what he was doing, he stopped and said, “I apologize to you two for walking so fast, but I get so excited with this job, I literally can’t slow down.” About that time, the Stairway from the Snow Tunnel into the Barn came into view. Santa had slowed his pace some and we all arrived at the same time. Santa said, “You better let me go in first, because we never know about Ike”. He mounted the stairs as Snowflake and I stood by. “Come on up” he shouted and held the door open for us. I followed Snowflake up and we walked under Santa’s arm while he stood holding the door open. Boy, he’s really a big guy, I thought to myself. After entering the Barn, I looked around and thought, “Wow, this place is enormous! It’s bigger than the Hockey Arena back in North Pole City.” Along one wall at the far end was a nice sized office with a light shining through the windows. Inside there was someone throwing darts or something. On the left side of the office, a Brass Plate on the doorway said TOOL CRIB. Then between the Tool Crib and the left corner of the building were 5 large stalls. On every sturdy gate to each stall were Brass Plates; one for Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen and one for Rudolph. On the other side of the Office were plates announcing Comet, Cupid, Donder and Blitzen, and sure enough, there were 5 or 6 animals in each. An empty stall with a brass plate that was blank was in the right hand corner of the room. Below that plate was a companion plate that had “Gulliver” engraved. That was obviously where the great big St. Bernard that Santa loved so much spent his many nights when not in the Claus house at the foot of Santa’s Bed. As we approached the office, the door opened and out stepped Ike the Elf; Trainer and Caretaker of Santa’s Reindeer Heard. He was about 4’-0” tall, skinny as a rail; his head was bald as a cue-ball and when he smiled, there were several teeth missing. “Hello Ike”, Santa said. “You know Snowflake here.” Ike took off his striped Elf Hat and bowed toward her and said, “Howdy mam.” Then Santa said, “And, I want you to meet a friend of ours. This is Elmo D. Elf; the Editor in Chief of the North Pole News in North Pole City.” Ike reached for my hand and said, “Pleasure to meet you Mr. Elf. I read your paper weekly…especially the Hockey Scores and your reports on the games and all.” “Well thank you very much Ike,” I said. Santa cut in saying, “Ike, we don’t want to mess up your evening, but Elmo is trying to get our story to the people in the rest of the world. He says that folks all around the world find it hard to believe that our reindeer really fly. Would you take a few minutes and explain just how it is that you can teach the reindeer to fly?” “Shucks Santa,” Ike said…”I’ll not only explain it, if you want, I’ll even give him a real life demonstration!” Santa said, “Ike; that would be just great; does that sound okay with you Elmo? “Heck yes,” I replied. “Who wouldn't want to see that?” We’ll pick the story up right here next week. So be on the lookout for it!
  13. ClausNet Appoints First North Pole Correspondent Elmo D. Elf Named to Report Weekly From North Pole City, Arctic New York City, NY - May 15, 2014 - - Today it was announced jointly in New York City as well as North Pole City, Arctic that key representatives of ClausNet.com and the Almalagated Toy Workers Association have officially hammered out an agreement to exchange weekly reports. The announcement was made in a live Skpe Cast from the North Pole into the 34th floor headquarters of ClausNet Center here on Broadway. Several hundred members of the world wide media were in attendance. In his opening remarks, Mr.Michael Rielly, Founder and CEO of ClausNet said that, "for hundreds of years, little has been known about the actual existence of the North Pole, except that that a jolly old Elf named Santa Claus and some of his very highly talented Elf Craftsmen who produce massive amounts of toys for Good boys and girls through the ages live there." Then by Skpe, Rielly then introduced Elmo D. Elf as the new North Pole Correspondent for ClausNet. Mr. Elf indicated he has many years of experience as a reporter and is the Editor of The North Pole Sun, the weekly newspaper in North Pole City. He indicated he that though he was 119 years old, he is middle age by Elves standards at the North Pole. He indicated that Rielly has challenged him to report weekly to ClausNet concerning how toy production is progressing, indicating he never wanted to see another shortage of a given toy so highly desired by so many children as was the case with the Wii back in 2007. He further indicated he will be reporting as well as to what is happening in the North Pole City area and it's surroundings. Mr. Rielly then made his presentation saying, "Although the Elves have occupied the area for centuries, it wasn't until famed explorer Robert E. Perry was given credit for the North Pole's discovery in 1906 that anyone even knew of the area. Mr. Elf, who was a youngster by Elf standards in 1906 does remember the arrival of Perry. He also visits regularly with the Claus's and has learned about their predecessors; the Kringle's and Nicholas' families saying they have lived here for generations too because they needed skilled wood carvers at first to help make toys; so there's a lot of history that he's picked up in those discussions. Therefore our association should be very valuable in learning what goes on up at the North Pole". Mr. Elf then made his formal presentation, saying, "as the worlds population has grown, so has the Elves population up at the North Pole". He also stated that, "in the 2010 Census, it was learned that the total Elf population in and around North Pole City now exceeds over 50,000 individuals." He continued on by saying, "Obviously, as the population has grown, so have the capabilities of the Elves who have perfected new ways of working with steel, plastics, cloth, rubber and other materials used in today's modern manufacturing techniques. But as technology has improved, so has the need for improved tooling, packaging, storage and even delivery. So we will be sharing a lot of information with the Santa's helpers all around the world in my future reports". After their joint presentations, Mr. Elf asked the large crowd; "Are there any questions?" In the view of this reporter, every hand in the auditorium shot up. Mr. Rielly was obviously overwhelmed, but he selected an individual and asked that he state his name, that of his news organization and then ask a brief question. It was with a heavy British accent that the individual said, "Reginald Humphries of the BBC. My question is this. Why do Elves wear shoes with turned up toes?" With that came an up roar of laughter. After the laughing had subsided, Rielly turned toward the large video screen and jestered saying, "I'll let you take this question Mr. Elf." Mr. Elf with a massive grin on his wrinkled face spoke up and said, "Well it's been a long time since I've been asked that question, but I can tell you that it's really quite simple. Up here at the North Pole where I am, there are always a large number of feet of snow on the ice. In fact, we Elves simply can't walk anywhere without wet feet. We all have warm, toasty feet in these leather shoes. You might say they act almost as a wick and soak up the dampness. Whenever we attempt to dry out our shoes, the custom is to place them on top of the hearth with the toes down and the heals leaning back against the brick face of the fireplace. So as the sole of the shoe dries it bends the toe upward. The sides and tops of the shoe dry much slower and that's why Elves wear shoes with turned up toes. So no, we don't care what you may have heard, Elves have feet just like everyone else. I just might add though that this curve makes them very comfortable and much better for sliding on the Ice!" There was an outbreak of applause after he concluded his answer. Mr. Rielly thanked everyone for coming and invited them to stay for a reception following saying, "Mr. Elf will be available for you to visit with via Skpe, but we ask that you keep your visits with him brief so that all will have the unique experience to actually talk with a live Elf!" We wish to remind all members of ClausNet that Elmo D. Elf will make regular North Pole Reports here on ClausNet so be on the lookout for his future escapades.
  14. SantaRickyNJ

    Painting Seashell Santas

    From the album: Seashell Santas by RW

    Shell painting parties, campgrounds, Christmas in July, summer beach parties...
  15. SantaRickyNJ

    Patriotic Painting... Summer Santa RW

    From the album: Seashell Santas by RW

    Santa RW... Real Whiskers will paint shells, entertain, sing, and read stories all summer! From the Jersey Shore to the Redwoods, to Maine to Sanibel...
  16. SantaRickyNJ

    Santa Ry Reading Seashell Santas

    From the album: Seashell Santas by RW

    Seashell Santas... Available for Christmas in July, summer tropical Santa photo shoots, weddings, family reunions, and beach activities. This story is a transformatlon journey of a shell discarded on the beach into ornaments to behold & story retold.
  17. Announcement from the International Santa Celebration The Computer has Chosen the Next WINNER! Santa Scott Schittimer of Bremerton, Washington, Santa Scott has won a FREE Room Night (value $85 + tax) at the fabulous Double Tree Inn & Suites. Oh what FUN it is for me to call a Santa and tell them they have WON! Santa Scott joins the previous TWO winners, Santa Scott Sherlock from Montana and Santa Terry Lenahan from Georgia. Please get Registered and Reserve your room! to qualify for the NEXT GIVEAWAY. There are still NINE (9) more chances to WIN! Go to our ISC Tampa website for details. The sooner you register, the more times you will have a chance to win. Next drawing: 2/15/2014
  18. November 7-9, 2013 Great Wolf Lodge Grand Mound, Washington Thank you for attending the 4th Annual Northwest Santa Training Workshop! Remember the Real Santa is here and all the rest of us are his helpers. You don’t have your elves here, so we are providing a schedule to follow. Don’t be late or you will miss out! (Times and topics subject to change) SCHEDULE OF EVENTS THURSDAY Evening Registration in Hospitality Room~Social time (call 360.621.1493 for location) FRIDAY 7:30 Keeping Christ in Christmas-Morning devotional 8:00 Registration 9:00-9:45 Welcome and Announcements Round Table Santa Business, Marketing, Home Visits 10:30-11:15 Round Table Do/Don’t, Costuming, Sign Language 12:00-1:15 Lunch on Your Own 1:30-2:15 “Santa Hair and Makeup” By Santa Trever Waltos 3:30 Pictures in the Pool - in old fashion bathing suits 6:00 Santa Flash Mob at local Restaurant 8:00 pm Movie: “They Wore the Red Suit” *Main Conference Room SATURDAY 7:30 Keeping Christ in Christmas-morning devotional 8:00 Registration 8:30 “Night Before Christmas” story telling contest 9:30-10:30 Round Table Mrs Claus Forum Holding Newborns 10:30-11:00 CHECK OUT TIME 11:00-11:45 Santa Magic Workshop 11:50 Ornament Exchange 12:00 Buffet: “A Day In The Park" Raffle Gift Basskets~50/50 Drawings 1:00 “STEVEN THE GREAT” 2:00 Full Dress and Singing Practice 3:00 Parade: A Walk Through Great Wolf Lodge Please complete and return Evaluations to Santa Dennis Simpson PRESENTERS SANTA HAIR AND MAKE-UP by Santa Trever and Heidi Waltos SANTA MAGIC STEVEN THE GREAT by Magician Stephen Wakefield SPECIAL THANKS TO THE FOLLOWING FOR ORGANIZING AND CONTIBUTING TO THIS EVENT Event planning: Santa Dennis Gorley Santa Ron Kearns Santa Dale Scott Santa Dennis Simpson Santa Trever Waltos Donations: Baskets Santa Dale and Nancy Scott Santa Dennis and Michele Simpson Santa George and Nancy Smith Santa Trever and Heidi Waltos Santa Dennis and Glena Gorley Santa Ron and Marci Kearns Santa Jerry and Patti Nebel Gift Bags Sana Ron and Marci Kearns Santa Dennis and Michele Simpson Santa Gene and Tish Sanders Santa Eddie and Karen Hayes Santa George and Nancy Smith Espresso Products Direct Table decorations Santa Trever Waltos and Family Entertainment: “Stephen the Great” Vendors Alex Bennett, Ardesson’s Shoe Repair & New Shoes and Custom Items Jackie Noble--Seamstress Lakewood Costume--Dori A+ Alterations and Tailoring Katie Guerrero Various members of Norpac Santas Encouragement All the members of NORPAC SANTAS Ornament Exchange We will do another ornament exchange again this year at The Santa Conference while at Great Wolf Lodge. It’s easy!! Bring an ornament (wrapped, because we all know how fun it is to unwrap presents) to exchange. I’ll have a sign-up sheet during the conference. I’ll draw names to pair people up. Then on Saturday before lunch, we’ll do the exchange. This is for anyone For more info contact: Santa Dennis Simpson dsimpson@wavecable.com 360-871-1241 toy shoppe 360-621-1493 sleigh phone www.norpac-santas.org
  19. FOR ANY OF YOU THAT WILL BE IN THE NORTHWEST AREA NEXT SATURDAY AUG. 3RD PLEASE JOIN US!! THE AUGUST MEETING WILL BE HELD AT THE HOME OF SANTA DENNIS SIMPSON AUGUST 3 2013 12:00 noon 1762 VISTA RAMA DR E PORT ORCHARD, WA 98366 360-871-1241 What to bring: The meat of your choice to barbeque. A dish to share for a potluck. A folding chair. I have a bunch but maybe not enough for everyone. I will provide water, pop, coffee, plates, cups, plastic silver, condiments, napkins. Rather than a formal meeting we will be sharing, visiting and getting to know each other better. There of course will be some announcements and maybe a little discussion or planning for the 4th Santa Workshop at Great Wolf Lodge. BE SURE TO INVITE ANY SANTA, MRS CLAUS, OR HOLIDAY ENTERTAINER THAT MIGHT BE INTERESTED. The Nurse Museum, A Childhood Perspective (in our home) will be open for your viewing. PLEASE RSVP TO SANTA DENNIS SIMPSON 360-871-1241 dsimpson@wavecable.com
  20. NORPAC SANTAS 4th ANNUAL GREAT WOLF LODGE CONFERENCE NOVEMBER 7-9, 2013 GRAND MOUND, WA MAKE YOUR PLANS NOW TO JOIN US!!! Santa or Mrs Claus’s registration includes Saturday lunch, gift-bag, conference, vendor area and parade Couples registration includes Saturday Lunch for each, one gift-bag, conference, vendor area and parade. Additional Adult registration includes Saturday Lunch, vendor area and parade Child registration includes Saturday Lunch, vendor area and parade if in costume. REGISTRATION FORM: http://www.norpac-santas.org/SiteData/norpac-santas/GWL%20registration%202013.doc Room registrations must be made directly with Great Wolf Lodge prior to 10-7-13 to receive discounted rates. Please use booking code 1310NORPAC when making reservations online at www.greatwolf.com or by phone at 1-800-640-9653. King Suite (1 king and 1 hide-a bed) max 4 persons $109.00 Family Suite (2 queen and 1 hide-a-bed) max 6 persons $149.00 for 4 (additional cost per person beyond 4) Number of rooms held for our event are limited. We have a couple King and Family Suites reserved for Saturday Nov 9, 2013 for those who want to stay over until Sunday (169.00) When the King Suites are sold out there will be no more. When the Family suites are sold out there most likely are more available but our current price is not guaranteed. Please contact Santa Dennis Simpson ( 360-871-1241 or 360-621-1493) immediately if the reservation line indicates our rooms are sold out or for any questions or clarification. Additional Housing/RV Parking: Outback RV Park www.outbackpark.com 360-273-0585 3 miles away Holiday Inn Express 360-740-1800 11.5 miles away These locations are aware of our event, but you will need to contact them for rates. Mention NORPAC Santas WE CONCLUDE THE CONFERENCE WITH OUR FAMOUS NORPAC~SANTA PARADE *A Walk Through Great Wolf Lodge* For more info contact: Santa Dennis Simpson dsimpson@wavecable.com 360-871-1241 toy shoppe 360-621-1493 sleigh phone
  21. Santa Trever

    Santa Trever & Elf Sarah Sugarplum

    From the album: Santa Trever ~ 2010 and Beyond

    The Debut of Elf Sarah Sugarplum
  22. NORPAC ~ SANTAS 3rd ANNUAL CONFERENCE & WORKSHOP GREAT WOLF LODGE GRAND MOUND, WA NOVEMBER 1-3, 2012 PRESENTERS SIGN LANGUAGE by Dawn Harrison A fun session with Dawn teaching basic signs to communicate with children. You might even learn a song this year. THE MAGIC OF CHRISMAS by Santa Ron Kearns. Magic and entertaining while visiting with children that any Santa can perform. “HEALTHY SANTA” by Dr Steve Albrecht SANTA PHOTOGRAPHY by Santa Trever Waltos The proper etiquette of Working with Children ROUND TABLE DISCUSSIONS Santa Business, Marketing, Do’s and Don’ts, Dress, How to handle various situations, Hair and Beard Care VENDORS Lakewood Costume & Magic Alex Bennett ~ Ardesson’s Shoe and Custom Leather Items Jackie Noble ~ Santa's Clothes SPECIAL ENTERTAINMENT “BUCK AND ELIZABETH” Be part of the Santa Flash Mob at local Restaurant WE CONCLUDE THE CONFERENCE WITH OUR FAMOUS NORPAC~SANTA PARADE A Walk Through Great Wolf Lodge
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