Santa clauses: Reflections on, by Terry Nolan, Mayor Santa

Dec 1, 17 • 5enses, FeatureNo Comments

Photo by Chad Castigliano, Chronicker Photography.

“Number one, he’s got a real beard and he’s just a jolly-type person. He’s so giving of himself and always has been for the community. He’s just so great in that Santa role.” ~Sue Palacios

The first time was 20 years ago, when I did it for the vet center. They needed someone and I just volunteered. I’ve been doing it more than 20 years now and still do it to this day. … That first year, it just came naturally. I just enjoy the kids so much, little kids especially. They’re cute and it’s just awesome to see them smile.” ~Terry Nolan

Other Santas, they can look the part really good — we’re talking $3,000 suits — but the way he handles the kids is … . It’s hard to put into words. I’ve been doing this with him for five years and the closest thing I can come up with is that he’s so grandfatherly. He absolutely loves the kids.” ~Chad Castigliano

“He’s just so community-oriented and talented with the kids. It’s like his second calling. There’s the ho-ho-ho kind of Santa, and there’s Terry. With him, there’s no rush and he gets to know each child he interacts with. When they’re afraid, he takes his time and tries to win them over, and he’s very good at that.” ~Patti Lake

“I was raised in Phoenix and I remember when Park Central was built. When I was a kid, before, there weren’t mall Santas; the Santas were at the stores. My parents took me as a kid. … With my kids, I took them to see Santa at the mall, but it was nothing like what I do with Chad. It’s a really neat thing for the kids and for the families.” ~Terry Nolan

Really, I think he’s just a very genuine guy. When he started being Santa for the Dewey-Humboldt Historical Society, he was even great with the animals that came in.” ~Sue Palacios

He likes to interact with everyone. With his friends, he teases you, and he’s got a good sense of humor. And, when he’s not wearing that Santa hat, no matter where and when you see him, he’s always got that cowboy hat on.” ~Patti Lake

“I’ve always been good with kids. It just comes naturally. It’s not a persona. You just be the person they expect you to be. … It’s something I enjoy doing. It inspires me to do this with the kids. It’s uplifting.” ~Terry Nolan

“Part of it’s the way he talks. His voice is so calming. But it’s also the words he uses and the way he talks to kids on their level. He has this magic. And it’s not something he’s going to tell you. He’s just such a good guy. He’s amazing, and funny, and I’ve had so many people tell me good stories about him. He’s a real-life Santa Claus.” ~Chad Castigliano


Find out more about Chronicker Photography at Chronicker.Com.

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