SANTA Claus gladly disregards WC Fields' advice and cheerfully works with children and animals - but sometimes meeting the famed man in the red suit can be a daunting prospect for youngsters.
"The hardest thing about being Santa is when all mum wants is a lovely Christmas photo and the kids are too scared or overwhelmed so the moment is ruined," Santa said in a statement to The Queensland Times.
"Most kids come bolting over to you which is great, but not all the kids are happy to see Santa."
To help the thousands of families expected to visit Santa at Redbank Plaza, the centre has issued some essential tips for parents. They include:
- Walk them past Santa a few times and point him out so they become familiar with him and that other children are visiting.
- Talk about Santa leading up to your visit and read stories and watch movies featuring him so they see him as friendly and happy.
- Make sure you time your visit to suit your child's normal schedule. Nap time, for example, is not a great time to visit.
- Take your child to the bathroom before the visit and have some snacks ready in case there is a wait before your turn.
- Redbank Plaza has footstools so parents can sit close enough to settle their child but far enough away not to be in photos.
Redbank Plaza will be hosting Santa until Christmas Eve.
Children can win a PlayStation Vita and a home visit by Santa.
- Lists his postal address as North Pole, 9999. Residential address: 1 Reindeer Lane.
- Aka St Nicholas, aka Kris Kringle, aka Father Christmas.
- Gives a warning of his arrival by calling out, "Ho, ho, ho."