Garden City, New York (CBSNewYork) — Starting holiday shopping as early as possible is the top priority for some people this week.
Jennifer McLogan of CBS2 reported that many families who went to the mall were surprised to see Santa Claus waiting for them.
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Santa Claus returned to the mall and was vaccinated.
The Scuereb siblings from Lynbrook are sitting on Santa’s lap for the first time.
“I embraced Santa… I love Santa!” they said.
Rebounding from a year full of sadness and uncertainty, in 2020, let Santa hide in a clean plastic sheet or completely mask and keep away from society.
“We can’t let the kids sit on my lap. They have to keep six feet away and shout out the Christmas presents they want,” said Dr. Charles Natal of Santa Claus at Bryant Park.
“Last year was very difficult. But we did write the Santa Claus list and we sent it to the North Pole,” said Surita Jameron, a mother from Queens Village.
Many of these letters reveal the losses caused by the pandemic.
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“Please find a way to treat COVID,” one person said.
“This year has been tough for my mother. She can’t afford anything,” another said.
“It’s really difficult, but I’m trying to do it well,” the third letter said.
Now, Santa Claus can bring a close cheer.
“I will encourage them to pull out my beard, some of them pull out very hard,” Natol said.
Nationwide, the tight labor market makes it difficult to find enough qualified Santa candidates who are willing to wear costumes and work shifts.
Roosevelt Field Mall’s marketing director Nancy Gilbert said: “Santa Claus arrived this morning and someone lined up to greet him at the North Pole.”
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If they want to ensure a certain time period, the family can make a reservation.
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