23.th july: Conspiracy of Christmas in July
Santa Claus Congress celebrates 50 years anniversary in the middle of the summer. What are they up to?
”Ho-Ho-Ho!” It’s in the middle of July, and the temperature is 77 degrees Fahrenheit, yet the laughter of Santa Claus resounds over hundreds of children and adults. Allthingschristmas.com has visited the World Santa Claus Congress that takes place each year in the old amusement park Bakken in Denmark.
Besides Christmas itself, this is their most important event and the only time they can meet to discuss important issues such as better rooftop parking conditions and standards of chimney-cleaning. And of course they have to fix the date for Christmas Eve.
The congress is a proud tradition that makes Santas from the whole world gather, and this year they are celebrating the 50 years anniversary. Allthingschristmas.com meets them in their grand parade through the Danish amusement park.
In front, the largest Santa Claus walks with a huge crown on his head. Just behind him there is a large horn orchestra of Santas Clauses followed by a lot of smaller Santas with their helpers. Small signs show from which part of the world they are coming from. There are Santas from Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany and even Japan and Australia. Especially the last two countries are far from the coldness of the North Pole, but this doesn’t disturb the Australian Santa, David Downey.
“Santa Claus belongs to all cultures, so there is no problem in Santa coming from Australia. I have a secret identity as Santa in December, and in the summer I participate in the congresses,” says David Downey while he greets the children around him.
The parade is being followed by children and adults, and the most eager Santas teases the children and ask them if they have behaved well this year. One of the Santas doing this, is the Dane Jan Siegersted who has the title of “authorized Santa Claus”.
“In Denmark you can become authorized Santa Claus if you pass a test. In this test you have to answer various questions, such as where Santa Claus lives. Of course the answer is that he lives on the North Pole,” says Siegersted.
Some may say that is absurd that Santas are making a parade between flowers and trees in the middle of the summer, as most people connect Santa Claus with December, snow and coldness. What are they up to? Jan Siegersted has an explanation for that.
“In December we are too busy to meet. In July, however, we don’t have much to do, so this means that we have plenty of time to meet and have a good time.”
The World Santa Claus Congress continues until the 25th of July and also features a swim for the Santas, several parades, and a ride through the city centre of the Danish capital Copenhagen.