This holiday season, kids may not be able to sit on Santa’s knee at the local mall but that doesn’t preclude them from having some direct contact with the jolly fella.
The Westcliff Group, a real-estate developer that manages several shopping malls across Quebec, has adjusted its annual Santa meet-up so kids can still chat to Santa online while complying with Quebec’s COVID-19 health measures.
Although they will not be able to pose for photos, kids will be able to talk to Santa and give him their Christmas present list. How? Well, first, parents will have to make an appointment online to book a session at one of the two participating malls in Montreal—Carrefour Angrignon in Lasalle or Place Vertu in St. Laurent. Once they arrive, families will be greeted by one of Santa’s elves, who will direct them to their ‘office,’ in the North Pole. There, the kids will have a virtual conversation with Santa, who will be in front of a screen. Each conversation will last three minutes and will be recorded. Parents can buy the video as a keepsake. After the visit, the elves will give each kid a gift (a book by French cartoonist Samuel Parent called titled Cybelle et Zed – Au secours de Rudolphe, a story about two friends who help out a famous reindeer) and then will disinfect the space before the next child arrives.
Santa helps keep the magic of Christmas alive
The goal of this event is to keep the Christmas spirit alive during these difficult times. “When we first heard about the Santa Claus live experience, we were quickly onboard with the opportunity to offer it to our customers to ensure not only that the children could have a virtual contact with Santa Claus but above all, to continue this tradition in our shopping centres and keep the holiday magic alive,” says Julie Touchette, communications and marketing manager for the Westcliff Group. “It is important for us to create a festive, magical and positive atmosphere, especially this year.”
How kids can chat with Santa online
Santa will at Carrefour Angrignon from Nov. 14 to Dec. 24 and at Place Vertu from Nov. 15 to Dec 24. In addition to the virtual meet-ups, Carrefour Angrignon will be hosting a non-perishable food drive from Nov. 16 to Dec. 23. The items collected will be donated to the Jeunesse au Soleil food bank. Additionally, Place Vertu will be hosting a toy drive from Nov. 15 to Dec. 13. All donations will go to the Centre de pédiatrie sociale de Saint-Laurent, a centre that helps families in need.
The actual session with Santa is free and the recorded video costs $15.99. To book an appointment, for Santa’s full schedule and for more information, visit click here.