Posts Tagged ‘Santa suits’

Book Review: The Red Suit Diaries

May 25, 2017

The Red Suit Diaries by Ed ButchartRedSuitDiaries

A Real-Life Santa on Hopes, Dreams, and Childlike Faith

This book is a biographical sketch of Ed Butchart’s journey to becoming Santa Claus for the children and children-at-heart of the Atlanta area.  He begins with the first time he donned the red suit.  He was a senior in high school at the time.

After high school he went to college to study journalism then joined the Marine Corp.  When his time in as a Marine was over he became a salesman for a medical diagnostics company.

He was also active in his church where he befriended a wheelchair-bound man who had cerebral palsy.  This friendship eventually led Ed to stop being a very successful salesman and start a non-profit business repairing wheelchairs and other medical equipment for folks in need named Friends of Disabled Adults, Inc. (FODA).

The next time he donned the red suit was for a special event hosted by his church.  This launched him into becoming a professional Santa Claus.  Ed’s faith became a big part of his philosophy, of what he endeavored to portray as Santa Claus.  He was determined that each child who came to see him would experience the love of God Who sent His son Jesus born on that first Christmas day to die for the sins of the world and to know that just as God loves him or her Santa loves him or her, too.

The book is full of Santa Ed’s encounters with children.  One of my favorite stories was of a family who visited Santa.  There were five poorly dressed children.  At the request of the oldest child Santa Ed started with the younger children.  After listening to their Christmas lists, the oldest girl sat on Santa’s lap.  Her only request was for a Christmas tree for the younger children to enjoy.  Ed, seeing the family did not have extra money for Christmas, encouraged the young lady to keep hope in Christmas and her dreams alive for herself and her siblings.  He told the man who videotaped for sale each child’s interview with Santa to give the family for free their children’s interview tape.  As the family walked away the videographer followed them and gave them a $100 bill, telling them it was from Santa, so they could get a Christmas tree and make their Christmas merry.  The family’s return thanking Santa for “his” gift is priceless.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, and I believe you will enjoy it also.  It made me want to put on the red suit and share the love of Jesus, the One whose birth we celebrate on Christmas Day, with children in my area.  Perhaps someday, if God wills it, I will do so.

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Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland

April 26, 2015

My daughter at Bronner's CHRISTmas WonderlandAbout five years ago my daughter and I visited the world’s largest Christmas store.  It was a great experience.  Walking through a store the size of one and a half football fields, enjoying the Christmas music being piped through the store’s public address system, and perusing shelf upon shelf of Christmas decorations we were mesmerized by the CHRISTmas Wonderland that is Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland.

Located in Frankenmuth, Michigan, Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland opened for business in 1954.  Over time the business grew.  The original building was expanded and two more buildings were added to enhance their customers’ Christmas shopping experience.  Finally in 1977 it was decided to consolidate all their holdings under one roof on a forty-five acre site at 25 Christmas Lane, Frankenmuth, Michigan.  In 1991 the store expanded again doubling its size.  Further expansions allowed them to add a shipping department shipping their ornaments all over the world and brought the size of their building to five and a half football fields.

At Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland one will find a treasure trove of Christmas ornaments, Christmas lights, Christmas trees, outdoor decorations, nativity scenes, and Santa suits and accessories, and much, much more.  Click here for a virtual tour of the world’s largest Christmas store.

For more information about this wonderful store and to order this year’s Christmas decorations go to www.bronners.com or better yet take a trip to Frankenmuth and visit the store for yourself.  I hope to visit Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland again with my family real soon.

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