Sharing a sentiment of imagination and togetherness this holiday season
“Warrenton Santa” brings the magic of Christmas from his home to the community year-round – especially during the holiday season. By day, he works in the Washington, D.C. area. By night and on weekends, he assumes the role of his alter ego, Santa Claus.
He obtains special gifts for children each month: “Everyone knows me by name at the local Lego® store,” he says. He mails children important reminders in July: “Santa is always watching and be sure to be good.” As the cooler weather comes, his promotions increase and he provides services such as back-to-school postcards and certificates, reminding children to be good.
Warrenton Santa began in 2012 when a local resident established the persona to “add a little flavor” for a church Christmas party. “My son was four years-old at the time. He didn’t realize then that it was me in the suit, and that I acted as his Santa,” he laughs – you can imagine the “Ho, ho, ho…” This realization made Santa acknowledge that he was onto something special.
Zech, his son, who is about 10 years old now, still believes in the spirit of Santa and the magic of Christmas. He vigilantly protects his father’s alter ego to preserve the magic for the children of Warrenton. Personally, Zech thinks his father is simply just one of Santa’s many helpers around the world. Warrenton Santa says, “He knows that Santa has the ‘naughty and nice list’ and that I help him with the reminder certificates. However, I do buy my son’s certificate from a different source, so his reminders always looks a little different.”
Although he plays the man in the red suit, he stresses that Santa isn’t the reason for the season, rather it is the birth of Jesus Christ. “The holidays are about family, and as a child I treasured that family time. One of the biggest presents we can give is our presence. It’s the time to reconnect and appreciate what one has.”
Santa encourages kids – young and old – to share time with others during the holiday season. Warrenton Santa, a disabled retired Navy veteran, knows firsthand the pain both military and civilian personnel feel when they spend most holidays away from their family. “Over 20 years, I remember being with my family for only six or seven holiday seasons,” he recalls. “Being alone during the holidays is especially hard, and we have any number of wonderful organizations that bring people together. From church groups and the USO to local nonprofits like Familes 4 Fauquier and Toys for Tots, everyone should be able to find someone to share the season with.”
If you are aware of an “extra special gift” that needs to be delivered any time, Warrenton Santa can be there – when a loved one returns home safe and sound from an overseas deployment, if a child needs a hospital visit, or for other special occasions, just let his elf know by visiting the Facebook page (facebook.com/warrenton-santa), or by emailing email@example.com.
Visit any one of the region’s Santas this holiday season from the Christmas Parade on December 1 and GumDrop Square, to story-time with Mrs. Claus at VonCannon General Store, to hot chocolate with Santa at the caboose, and so many more locations this holiday season.
Warrenton Santa provides:
- Home visits
- Open House appearances
- Business sponsored events – even breakfasts
- Christmas party visits
- Santa phone calls
- Personalized mailings for certificates, postcards, “nice” letters, and Christmas cards
Looking for a place to volunteer and spread the cheer during the holidays? If so, this list may provide you some ideas.
- Veterans Hospital
- Local nursing homes or assisted living facilities
- In-patient hospice facility (The Adler Center in Aldie is the closest one)
- Soup kitchen
- Salvation Army – spend time ringing the bell
- Volunteer or donate for Toys for Tots
- Church community meals