Holiday traditions may look a little different this year because of the pandemic. Santa visits and photos are among them.
"Santa is just a right of passage of childhood," 'Santa Sid' said via Zoom. "There's always the child who wants to pull my beard to see if it's real."
'Santa Sid' will be at the Galleria Dallas this year for the traditional photo op, but it will be socially distant. The Galleria will have a custom clear barrier between Santa and visitors. Instead of waiting in line, visitors will need to make reservations online for in-person or virtual visits. Those reservations are open now.
"At least being able to see Santa and talk to Santa I think gives them a sense of normalcy in a world that's not normal right now," 'Santa Sid' said. "I just hope that even with the restrictions that are in place this year, I just hope that they can feel some of the connectedness, and bring some of that joy."
At NorthPark Center, Santa visits are entirely virtual this year. The mall is partnering with Children's Health to host real-time virtual Santa visits. Online reservations open on Sunday, November 22 at noon to book times between November 27 and December 23. The price starts at $24.95.