This Christmas (Friday the 25th for anyone that might’ve forgot), billions of children from around the world will eagerly await the arrival of old St. Nick. Even though he’ll be paying many of us a visit, how much do any of us really know about the man squeezing down our chimney?
6) Santa is Real (or at least was)
The real St. Nicholas was the Bishop of Myra in modern day Turkey, where he paid the dowries of the poor and handed out coins and treats to children. St. Nicholas also performed miracles which included feeding an entire city for a two years. All his good deeds led him to become the patron saint of Children.
5) …and he has an address
In 1983 Canada post started their official Santa Claus letter response program. Ever since, upwards of a million letters are sent to Santa Claus each year, many from outside of Canada. Staff and volunteers work tirelessly to answer each and every letter in the language it was written. Santa’s postal code? H0H 0H0 of course!
For more information visit the Canada Post Website or write to Santa at :
North Pole H0H 0H0
4) Modern Santa is over 200
Even though he may live at the North Pole in Canada, modern Santa is really Dutch. Sinterklaas, a bishop that travelled house to house every year on December 5th, was celebrated in the Netherlands and only became known as Santa Claus in 1773 in a New York City newspaper. Dutch tradition now incorporates both Santa Claus and Sinterklaas.
3) …and he was a bachelor for over 100 years
The first mention of a Mrs. Claus came in 1849 in a short story called A Christmas Legend. It took another 40 years until Mrs. Claus really came into the public eye in the poem Goody Santa Claus on a Sleigh Ride by Katharine Lee Bates.
2) Santa is a sellout
Santa’s distinctive red and white outfit is more than just a unique fashion statement, and it is certainly no accident. In 1931 Coca Cola began a massive marketing campaign that dressed jolly old St. Nick in red and white.
1) Santa likes more than just cookies
In Britain and Australia many families leave out a cold beer, sherry or meat pies instead of milk and cookies. Predictably the Irish often leave out some Guinness along with Christmas pudding, and in Sweden and Norway children leave out rice porridge.
There’s much more we could say about Santa, but we still want to preserve some of the mystery! What you can be sure of is he’ll be paying you a visit in just a few days!
Stay informed. Stay Current.