Retraction: The Santa Cause, Fredericksburg, VA

A great reporter digs to find the facts and writes them as he knows them.  When he is wrong, he admits his mistakes.

I was wrong.

After a previous post regarding St. Nick in Fredericksburg, I got a call from Santa.  Rather, I missed a call from Santa.

(Listen to Santa’s message.)

When I connected with him he told me he wanted to make sure I had my story straight.

"Officially, I am THE Santa for Old Town Fredericksburg," he said, in a lilting Scottish brogue. 

There are no more dueling Santas.  Yes, there was another roving Santa downtown.  He was known as "The Singing Santa."  Yes, that Santa did work as the White House Santa, but he was with the Secret Service, not the FBI.  And, no, The Singing Santa doesn’t do Old Town any longer.

Santa also made a request.  In my previous post, I had identified him by a name other than Mr. Claus, and he wanted me to change that. He said it might spoil the Santa mystery for some good little girl or boy. 

I initially recoiled.

A great reporter digs to find the facts and writes them as he knows them.  When he is challenged, he stands his ground.   

I didn’t stand my ground.

After taking a moment, I realized with whom I was dealing.  This wasn’t a politico or a strict dictator.  He was much more powerful.  He knows my sleep patterns and my moral choices, for goodness sake.

I have edited the previous post, The Santa Cause.  My changes are bolded

Tales from the Road regrets the errors. 


  1. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Joyful, chilly and snow greeted everyone in Fredericksburg, Va on Saint Nicholas Day. Santa arrived with his Sleigh at the train station then disappeared in a flash. Exactly one hour later he reappeared at the Sleigh filled to the brim. Not a toy on board, “Lets load the Sleigh”. Puzzled the Children gathered around. Santa loaded them with a bound. Mother announced that this was one chance in a life time for Victoria now 5. Mom giving her over to Santa’s big sleigh. In the hopes that this memory will be here to stay. The Sleigh full now with Children to the brim they sang Jingle Bells just for him. “On Dasher, On Dancer,On Prancer and Vixen, On Comet,and Cupid, Donder, and Blitzen. Rudolph with his nose all a glow led the Sleigh of cheer through this little Old Town. Greetings to all the thousands who had come. Santa outstreched his arms to the sky proclaiming ” I brought you Snow, It’s what you asked for”.
    The crowd responded to Santa and All …”We love you Santa and thanks for the Snow.” With outstreched arms to the sky, everyone rang in the Spirit to each nearby. Cheers of Joy, Peace, Love, and Hope filled the air. Santa knew the Spirit was truely there. A job well done to each one involved. Santa knows their is a lot of Love. If times are tough, just Believe and gather close to all that you have. “May the Spirit of this Season bring just what you need. A Hug from someone you Love.” Santa
    Elf Laur North Pole Correspondent: Love from the North Pole

    December 9, 2008 at 11:37 am
  2. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: “Remembering Our Traditions Around the World at Christmas” Flurries dampened the streets as floats, marching bands and a large sleigh carring Santa (Saint Nicholas) passed by thousands of revelers at last nights annual Jaycees Christmas Parade in Fredericksburg.Roars of cheering children with parents,grandparents, aunts and uncles greeted Santa with “I love you”, “You Rock”, “I’ve been good”. Santa chimed back “Thankyou and Merry Christmas”.
    “Look at the weather I sent!” Santa proclaimed. Santa reaching to the sky with outstreached arms…”Snow, I sent you snow!” The crowds also put arms to the sky and cheered a relentless spirited joyful horay. Today is Saint Nicholas Day of which Santa celebrated around the world. The morning began with celebrations in Amsterdam with Saint Nick arriving on his ship, then on to Germany where he appears only on St. Nicholas Day and puts candy in the childrens’ shoes. “Santa quickly moves west” says Globius, the elf in charge of mapping out Santa’s day. “Fredericksburg, on the east coast of the Americas, Cleveland, Chicago, Scottsdale, SanDiego, Vancouver, Maui, Moscow…What a day just to name a few cities and towns along St. Nicks stops! Globius says that this is sort of a trial run day for the big guy. “Santa always comes back with a full load of Spirit.” This day is important because it gets the entire World pumped full of Holiday Cheer and the Spirit Meter goes off the chart”. Christmas Season is here! Let the festivities of celebration begin…Ringing in Christmas once again.
    “Blessings to all…Peace, Joy, and Hope” – Santa.
    Elf Laur North Pole correspondent wishing you what Santa said.

    December 7, 2008 at 8:30 am
  3. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Santa and Mrs. Claus returned to the North Pole at 12:01am today. I asked Santa how his weekend went?
    He replied, “It was quite calm and relaxing.” How so Santa…did you go to the beach or? “HO< HO< HO< HO! No I went and met with the children and their families. I asked them what they were thankful for...and they responded by reporting how their family had so much special meaning to them. It is such a simple question that most of them forgot to tell me what they wanted in the way of toys. Victoria, told me that she was thankful for the time to sit and chat with Santa. I spoke to the entire group of them in sort of an open dissusion format. It was wonderful!!! Well, we are going to retire for some rest...not a worry on my mind." Elf Laur North Pole Correspondent reporting that Santa has not a care on his mind. We deliver the NEWS even when Nothing is on our Mind.

    December 1, 2008 at 4:04 pm
  4. Elf laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Santa and Mrs. Claused stopped in Fredericksburg, Va this evening to light the Christmas Tree. Five year old Emma stole the stage show with her singing of Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree. Santa presented Emma with the first gift of Christmas which was Tinkerbell play friends and a Tinkerbell tent. Her 18 mo. old sister received a Tinkerbell blanket. Mom (professional photographer) snapped pictures at the Firehouse with Emma in the driver seat of the ladder truck and holding the Fireman’s axe. Then we arrived to a large turnout of children singing carols. Sixty choral members from the homeschool program sang, played, distributed music, and set up the sound system. Hundreds joined in the singing well known carols. Everyone was served hot coco, Santa’s favorite. Santa greeted every child that came pausing for parents that had to have their special moment. These are what Santa lives for… the smiles and hugs of his children. “I am a blessed man” stated Santa. “Tomorrow I get to live this all again. I, Santa have the best job anyone could have.” Anytime we think there is a problem (at the North Pole)I am brought back to knowing that it is about the children. Emma can be a scientist, a fireman, a pie baker, teacher, or the president. We light the spark that drives the internal flame of imagination in children. They can imagine they are Tinkerbell, an elf, a singer, dancer or playwrite.”
    I imagine that I am a great reporter.
    Elf Laur, North Pole correspondent the bestest reporter on site here in Fredericksburg, Va.

    November 28, 2008 at 11:27 pm
  5. Elf Laur

    We are pleased to announce that lazers will not be required on the “Dueling Santa” toyline which Jingles and Jangles proposed to the North Pole Creative Department. The Creative Department met in the open big wooden doors on Nov 21st for their “Brain Storm Moment” regarding this proposal. The Meeting began at promptly 11:00am and ended at 11:01am. One word came out of the meeting. “NO”
    Elf Laur, North Pole NEWS Flash Correspondent. “NO” out of the North Pole. Your BEST WORTH NEWS you can get.

    November 27, 2008 at 4:02 pm
  6. Elf Laur

    Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. Thank you Jennifer for requesting a “North Pole” local address for the “Old World” Fredericksburg Santa. Santa receives many letters, pictures and photos at the following location. He looks forward to seeing your family again this year in Old Town.
    Santa Iceman
    5060 Lavelle Dr.
    Fredericksburg, Va 22407

    November 27, 2008 at 3:46 pm
  7. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: When news travels fast you can count Elf Laur your North Pole NEWS Correspondent. “Mail arriving from around the globe is well above our current reading staff”. Elf Globius has determined that the best way to handle the North Pole mail crisis is to depend more on local and regional Santa “mail processing locations”.
    NEWS where it happens, if it happens. Elf Laur providing you the Best Worth news you can get.

    November 27, 2008 at 3:35 pm
  8. Jennifer

    Our children love the Old World Santa in Fredericksburg! I am hoping Elf Laur can provide a local “North Pole” address where I can mail my childrens’ Santa letters. They have drawn pictures and I have photos from last year for Santa. Love Jen and family.

    November 27, 2008 at 2:42 pm
  9. Greg

    Can someone update me on Elf Jingles and Elf Jangles duleing Santa toy idea. Did the North Pole Creative Department make a decision from their Brain Storm Moment? When will we get the dueling Santa toy? I suggest lazers.

    November 26, 2008 at 9:30 am
  10. Sharon

    Since it is apparent that elf Laur is being hired by the Washington Post; The folks at Williamsburg want to bring Santa here. Last season one of our family caught Santa in Fredericksburg on the Santa Sleigh. What a time the family had and the pictures are unbelievable. They took them with their own camera. Thanks Santa…please consider coming to visit our Old Market Square.

    November 25, 2008 at 4:49 pm
  11. Justin

    Elf Laur, this is a job offer by the Washinton Post. You are a terrific reporter. Call us when you get a moment and we will discuss employment opportunities. Wow, having a reporter placed at the North Pole with direct access to Santa.
    Your Newsreel flash was very creative and entertaining.

    November 25, 2008 at 2:41 pm
  12. Amanda

    What a special girl, Emma gets one chance in a life time to ride on a firetruck with Santa. I hope you sing really well when you and Santa light the Christmas tree. Wish I could be there.
    Love, Amanda from Altanta, Ga.

    November 25, 2008 at 2:04 pm
  13. Shane

    I just read the ongoings regarding Santa and the Elf community. I could not contain myself. Santa, if you read this just know that I am proud of you for handeling this situation in a most positive way. Emma sounds absolutely adorable. I am sorry I live so far away. I would love to visit your Santa. I make Denver my home and I am sure Santa will vist us here. Bless you all.

    November 25, 2008 at 9:15 am
  14. Emma

    I get to ride with Santa on the firetruck. I talked on the phone and sang him a song Oh Christmas tree Oh Christmas tree. I made a pumpkin pie at school, Mrs. Jennings is my teacher. He knows all my cats, Miss so-so, Callie, Bella I have six. I’m learning to ride my bike with training wheels. Mrs. Claus is nice and wanted to know about my pie. We made it today and eat it tomorrow. I’m going to sing my song when Santa and I light the Christmas tree. Aunt Sarah is coming from California. Bye

    November 25, 2008 at 7:51 am
  15. fretfulfairy

    This is the time of year to celebrate our friends, family and a wonderful Santa Claus whose only concern is the children. Lets greet him at The Tree Lighting, The Christmas Parade and when he strolls the streets of Historic Fredericksburg.
    He is always available for a picture with your child and will be at the Griffin, The Fredericksburg Museum, Jabberwockys and The Richard Johnston Inn for pictures. Lets celebrate this Holiday season and be Thankful that we were included in this wonderful publication

    November 23, 2008 at 8:45 am
  16. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Santa arrived promptly at 7:00 PM at Village Center. He took center stage with the Elf Orchestra on the platform directly behind him. Santa stated “listen to the words of this song. It was written for my personal friend Josh Groban. I feel honored to perform it for you this evening. It is called THANKFUL”.
    The Orchestra started playing and then the most amazing voice came out of Santa. “Somedays we forget to look around us, Somedays we can’t see the JOY that surrounds us…So caught up inside ourselves… It’s up to us to be the change, and even though we all can do more, There’s so much to be thankful for.” Santas’ voice sounded like an angel. Tears flowed like frozen rivers from the Elves. Without hesitation at the end of the song Santa proclaimed in a thunderous voice “The Santa Cause is over”. He left the stage immediately saying not a word.
    I stopped Elf Alex. “What is your reaction to the statement that the Santa Cause is over?” Alex replied “Ok”. “Elf Thomas what say you about the “Santa Cause” incident being over?” “Ok” Thomas stated. Everyone left with the word “ok” on their lips.
    Elf Laur, NEWSREEL Flash “24on” bringing you the Most Best NEWS saying “Everythings OK at the North Pole”.

    November 21, 2008 at 8:29 pm
  17. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Elf Laur here at Village Center. The crowd has packed in in great anticipation of the “Big Guys'” arrival. The Elf orchestra has just arrived at The Big Green Tree. All I hear is the murmer of “What is up with this?”
    “The Orchestra?” “What do you think Santa is going to do? “He must be up to something special!”
    Well, we just have to wait for his arrival.
    Elf Laur, North Pole Correspondent. The “24on” best news you can get.

    November 21, 2008 at 6:01 pm
  18. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Thadius,head of the Elf Council met this morning with Santa and the Elf Council Members behind the big wooden locked doors. Everyone was mum about the outcome regarding “Santa Cause” fallout. Mrs. Claus has announced that Santa will address the entire village tonight at 7:00. All Elves are to meet at The Tree in Village Center.
    Elf Laur, North Pole Correspondent.
    The “24on” best news you can count on.

    November 21, 2008 at 4:26 pm
  19. Matt

    As a reporter, I applaud your transparency. Too often we in the field of journalism demand such honesty from our subjects without giving it of ourselves.

    November 21, 2008 at 2:56 pm
  20. Bonnie De Lelys

    Santa always visits us at The Richard Johnston Inn on the weekends

    November 21, 2008 at 9:59 am
  21. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: Elf Jingles and Elf Jangles of the 31st Village District are to pitch what they believe to be THE “Hot New Toy” idea for this season. “Dueling Santas” Jangles says this fits right in with the political climate of today. (Elf Laur believes that this is a twist on the recent Presidential Elections down in the United States). The North Pole Creative Department will hold a “Brain Storm Moment” to consider Elf Jingles and Elf Jangles idea.
    North Pole NEWSREEL Correspondent, Elf Laur
    The “24 On” Best Worth News you can count on.

    November 21, 2008 at 9:32 am
  22. Elf Laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL Flash: No word yet out of the Council meeting scheduled for 9:00 am today regarding “Santa Cause” incident. Third Party lobbists have now entered their objections on removal of Elf Karen of the Vistor Tour Department. It is suggested that Elf Karen may not be the Elf to take the fall for “Santa Cause”. Thadius, Head of the Elf Council was unavailable for comment.
    Elf Laur, North Pole Correspondent

    November 21, 2008 at 9:00 am
  23. Tanner

    I am a third party, Elf Laur, so I can offer a little objectivity to the Council. I lobby that Elf Karen be reinstated. I believe her intentions were noble. The record has been set straight.
    On behalf of all children, young and old, please resume operations swiftly.

    November 21, 2008 at 7:03 am
  24. Elf laur

    When news travels in a flash you can count on Elf Laur, your North Pole News Flash Correspondent to bring you the latest up to date information. Elf Laur at your side now “24 on” the “Santa Cause” You can trust Elf Laur to be news worthy.
    This is an attempt to get you news.
    Elf Laur, North Pole Correspondent
    News at it’s “Best Worth”.
    This advertisement paid for by “Elves for Ethical Treatment Party” and “Characters Are Us”. Elf Laur, North Pole Correspondent has no affiliation with our members and provides NEWS independent of our better wisdom.

    November 21, 2008 at 2:30 am
  25. Elf laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL flash: Elf Karen of the Visitor Tour Department at the North Pole to be asked by the Head Elf Council to remove herself as a result of the “Santa Cause” incident. Elf Karen it appears was leaking misleading information to the Editor of Southern Living without Elf Council approval. “This Elf no longer has the best interest of the Children at heart” stated Thadius, head of the Elf Council. “Santa Cause” as you know has brought Elf production to a standstill. Negotiations of appeasement continue with 9:00AM meetings with the “Big Guy”.
    Santa is burning midnight oil to resolve the fallout from “Santa Cause”
    North Pole Correspondent: Elf Laur

    November 21, 2008 at 2:10 am
  26. elf laur

    North Pole NEWSREEL FLASH: Santa discovers that Rudolph’s noise is warm. “Something is wrong with him” Santa exclaimed! Elf DOC has been asked to make a medical exam on the dear creature. “Try the dust on him” said Santa. DOC replied…”I have and it won’t glow red”. The Elf medical team lead by DOC has been assembled and is investigating the problem. Updates to follow.
    Elf Laur, North Pole correspondent

    November 21, 2008 at 12:59 am
  27. elf laur

    It is past midnight on Friday, one week before Santa arrives on the Firetruck to help light the Fredericksburg Christmas Tree. What are you all doing? Sleeping I hope. Where is Santa? He is still creating the magic that is every place he needs to be. That place is always perfect for the Children, Mom and Dad, Grandma, and Grandpa. “Special Memories” these are for real. And “Yes Virginia” there is a Santa Claus.

    November 20, 2008 at 11:06 pm

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