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Reservations to see Santa?

Discussion in 'Christmas Controversy & Opinion' started by drseuss1217, Aug 27, 2015.

  1. drseuss1217

    drseuss1217 Merry Forums Newbie Merry Forums Member

    My family used to visit a local mall every Christmas to see Santa. We recently received an email about signing up for the " Santa experience." Instead of being able to stand in line and meet St. Nicholas, families must now reserve a time to see Santa this year and get the "Santa Experience."

    What is the "Santa Experience?" It is a 15-minute Dreamworks screen show with Shrek that takes the family on a journey to see Santa. After the show, families are guided to Santa in the mall.

    Unfortunately, the "Santa Experience" is the only way families can see Santa. You cannot just go to the mall and get in line and see him.

    I don't mean to sound old fashioned, but wasn't getting in line and making your way up the line and then seeing Santa an experience in itself? is it necessary to have to make this whole visual experience about it and now have to reserve your day/ time to see Santa at a local mall and if you can't afford the "experience" then you may not get to see Santa.

  2. Ladybugkisses

    Ladybugkisses Elf Choir Book Distributor MMC Lifer

    I agree with you in regards to the whole standing in line being part of the experience. My parents and older siblings took me to see Santa and that's how I remember it, standing in line to see Jolly St. Nick and that is how I in turn go about doing it with my kids. My youngest waits anxiously to see Santa and tell him all her Christmas wishes and my 17yr old DD and I like to people watch and discuss last minute holiday ideas and plans. We even complain about how long it takes...but again it's part of the fun of it. I'll be sad once our family visits to see Santa no longer happen because this year may be my last year I can convenience my 10yr old DD that he's real and it's not really mummy who puts all the presents under the tree.

    It might sound all convenient and CG cool but if you ask me if ppl were willing to stand in line to meet Santa and it's been that way for generations then why try to fix something that isn't broke. Not everything needs a modern twist to it.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2015
  3. MerryCarey

    MerryCarey A Voice from the North MMC Lifer MMC Donor Santa's Elf Christmas Crew Louann Jeffries Award Kringle Radio DJ

    It doesn't seem right to be forced to make a reservation to see Santa. The whole CGI/Shrek thing sounds like a marketing department's brain-child---someone is making money off of it, you can be sure. And that's why it's being done. Someone has found a way to commercialize it.

    Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but why mix Santa up with CGI and Shrek? Let Santa be the star of the show ... waiting in line to see him lets the child and the parent(s) build their own anticipation, instead of having it manufactured for them.
  4. Billy Battles

    Billy Battles Santa's Doppelganger MMC Lifer MMC Donor

    I don't quite get what you are saying does not make sense to me.
    Ryan likes this.
  5. Jeff Westover

    Jeff Westover Chief Santa Tracker MMC Founder Santa's Elf Kringle Radio DJ

    That's why we never bother with mall Santas in the first place. Nothing against them personally but they are in a market place and he's being used in that space. We usually hook up with Santa at Church or we visit him in a local community city square...where nothing is for sale and Santa just focuses on the kids.
    Ryan and AuntieMistletoeDear like this.
  6. AuntieMistletoeDear

    AuntieMistletoeDear MMC Hostess of Christmas Online MMC Lifer Alum Christmas Crew Christmas Talk Alum

    Don't worry Billy Santa is real except for the one at the Mall he used to be Santa's helper, but now he works for the Mall folk.

    Two years ago, I had observed Santa in the off season with his summer attire, and my goodness he was awesome.

    My co-worker and I joked about how much he looked like Santa and then a child greeted him as such and he replied so when I had the chance I whispered to him about Clausnet where many Santas gathered to chat about a life of jolliness and it turns out, he was already a member.

    Turns out he's the Santa for the Annual Downtown Christmas Walk and children and adults line up to meet him and Mrs. Claus in the parkette where the city's Christmas tree stands and it doesn't cost a penny and you don't need an appointment and he's jolly year 'round.

    Love that small merry world kind of stuff, it helps me forget about the commercialism.
    Ryan likes this.
  7. Coen

    Coen Merry Forums Elf, 2nd Class MMC Premiere Member

    I do agree with the sentiment and feeling of 'goold old times' if you stand in line to wait for Santa. As a Dutchman, this is something that is foreign to me, but I can certainly imagine how one would feel.

    Sadly, traditions sometimes change (slowly) and especially for younger children who would grow up with the newer form of the tradition it may be what they associate with the happy feelings of Christmas. My point is that from a child's point of view, this making a reservation and getting a Shrek Christmas experience may one day be their happy childhood Christmas memory. Though that does not mean that it necessarily is a good thing.
    Ryan likes this.
  8. tyreejames

    tyreejames Reindeer Pooper Scooper Merry Forums Member

    My local mall had this very same experience last year; I believe the other 2 closest to me still had the regular Santa line-up. I'm not one to take my children to the mall to see Santa but I recall several parents being unable to due to reservations being booked up. I'm all for the Santa line-up and this just seems like even more of a money grab...
  9. RadioJonD

    RadioJonD ♪♫Mistletoe Mix-ologist♫♪ MMC Lifer Alum Santa's Elf Christmas Crew Christmas Talk Alum Kringle Radio DJ

    Lets' see...Reservations to see Santa via a Shrek lead journey...or...Tickets for the Polar Express...Hmmm...Sorry Mall Santa!

    If I'm eventually going to have to pay for some sort of "Experience" my grandchildren and I will journey with Santa on the train!
  10. HollyJolly

    HollyJolly Mrs. Claus' Executive Assistant MMC Lifer MMC Donor

    Not to hijack the thread, but RadioJohnD - what actually happens on the Polar Express Trains? Is there enough for adults to dig it?
    Ryan likes this.
  11. HollyJolly

    HollyJolly Mrs. Claus' Executive Assistant MMC Lifer MMC Donor

    Not to hijack the thread, but RadioJohnD - what actually happens on the Polar Express Trains? Is there enough for adults to dig it?
  12. Ryan

    Ryan Christmas Podmaster MMC Lifer MMC Donor Christmas Crew

    Our local Christmas stores, North Pole City, has reservations. Their Santa is very popular and has been at it for years. The space is taken up with wall to wall Christmas, and there's just not a lot of room for lines. So,this year they've gone to appointments.
  13. Jeff Westover

    Jeff Westover Chief Santa Tracker MMC Founder Santa's Elf Kringle Radio DJ

    Well, that's fine. But are they charging for it?
    Ryan likes this.
  14. Ryan

    Ryan Christmas Podmaster MMC Lifer MMC Donor Christmas Crew

    No, its free. Like most places they charge for the photo, but the visit is free.
  15. Winter_Worlock

    Winter_Worlock Cryo-Sorcerer MMC Premiere Member

    Oh, chestnuts.

    I went to the dreamworksexperience website to look at the video, but it wouldn't play. I'm morbidly curious to see how much of a trainwreck this is.

    Now, I understand just how crazy cross-marketing has become these days. Gosh, Lego now just created a universe that is a cross between Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Stargate SG-1, for the purpose of integrating all of the different brand IP's they make models of, using an interdimensional portal system. Yes, things are a bit ridiculous now, but that Lego Dimensions idea is somewhat cool.

    Using Shrek or How to Train Your Dragon as an introduction to see Santa just feels someow counterproductive. I love both of those films, but can't imagine how they are going to make that feel like holiday magic. Really? Shrek, the "Get off my swamp, fairytale creatures!" Ogre who holds the world record for the longest fart is taking kids to meet Santa? What's going on here?

    What makes this even more bizarre is that Dreamworks also has Rise of the Guardians, where Santa is a superhero and the North Pole is HQ for famous holiday characters to convene and protect the children of Earth. But they didn't think to integrate THAT into this experience?
  16. HollyKing

    HollyKing Merry Monarch of Yuletide MMC Premiere Member

    Waiting in line, eh?

    I remember seeing (more than a few times, unfortunately) the spectacle of seeing parents literally drag their shrieking children to see Santa. Santa was just Santa - no fangs or horns or anything - but from the kids' reaction, you'd have thought he was Hannibal the Cannibal. I'm talking shrieking like a siren and digging their heels into the sidewalk - and their parents (or parent) are all red-faced and like, "You're going to sit on Santa's lap and tell him what you want for Christmas if it kills us all!"

    That pic must be worth a lot to that mom or dad....
  17. Winter_Worlock

    Winter_Worlock Cryo-Sorcerer MMC Premiere Member

    Well, horns or not, sometimes Santa is just...

  18. AuntieMistletoeDear

    AuntieMistletoeDear MMC Hostess of Christmas Online MMC Lifer Alum Christmas Crew Christmas Talk Alum

    In my merry neck of the woods; the largest mall is offering free visits with Santa that include a photo for children diagnosed with Autism (and spectrum disorders). They often have sensory sensitivities and can't handle the bright lights, loud noises and busy line ups. The mall will open its doors 2 hours earlier for the next two Sundays so these delicate children can visit with our Santa (who is a member of Clausnet) at no cost to them. In my city, the Christmas spirit is alive and well and the director of mall operations has not gone totally commercial to make a buck.
    e_xander likes this.
  19. AuntieMistletoeDear

    AuntieMistletoeDear MMC Hostess of Christmas Online MMC Lifer Alum Christmas Crew Christmas Talk Alum

    Update: Saw a beautiful photo of the Santa mentioned above stretched out on the floor with a young boy with Autism and the family was overjoyed to finally have a photo of their son with Santa. I watched him again today while I was shopping; sure hope this one is immortal.
    I believe!
    e_xander likes this.
  20. shrcpark

    shrcpark Reindeer Feeder Technician Merry Forums Member MMC Premiere Member

    My kids have seen Santa at Christmas time at a local story-time attraction. The kids were excited to see him and they really took their time to talk to each child. The line was FOREVER and it was worth it. Santa and Mrs. Clause would ask the children several questions and were able to spend about 10 minutes with both of them. If the kids were last in line or there were only a few people in the line, they were able to visit Mrs. and Mrs. Clause for about 10 minutes more. It was so fun to see their faces when they saw them and interacted. I missed those days. The visit was free and we never purchased a picture.

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