Two days before lighthouse duty I was invited to shoot a Santa Claus convention in Muskegon. These men are not run of the mill department store Santas, they dedicate a great deal of their lives to charitable work and they take their job as The Man quite seriously. They came from all over the mid-west and you can catch them working year round as good will ambassadors of the Spirit of Christmas at everything from Kiwanis, County Fairs, Store Openings and small town parades. Most of them have a spouse that is dedicated as Mrs. Claus. One of my close neighbors organizes this event. I’ve been to a lot of conventions in my life but none felt like this. The benevolence and good cheer was palpable. It was a wonderful side trip through childhood delight. I felt rather like Will Farrell in Elf; “IT’S SANTA!!”. I captured this moment of movement when the Santas were trading places with the Mrs. Clauses for group photos.
In closing I must mention that there were large folding tables groaning under the weight of traditional Santa Claus fare. As you can imagine, the cookies were outstanding.