Texas Connects Us: North Texas Santa Inspires New Generation to Believe

For many North Texas families there is only one Santa Claus to snap a picture with each Christmas.

For a few weeks each December, the same Santa Claus has called Dallas' NorthPark Center home for 28 years.

"The kids have so much energy [and] the families do, too," said Santa Claus. "It kind of feeds me that energy. I try to give it back to them."

Over the last 28 years, the NorthPark Santa has given plenty.

Every morning he leads story time where he teaches children the importance of giving and then spends time with those who've patiently waited to see him.

"People often think kids have these huge lists and it's kind of greedy, but actually they're just having fun imagining things," said Santa. "So many kids ask about family members who are ill to get better or they'll also ask for children in need to have something special. They're actually very thoughtful and thinking of others."

Out of the millions of wishes he's heard, Santa says the very best gift may be the memories - from the children coming to see him for the very first time to those who keep coming back.

While we were visiting Santa, the Murdock family from Canton arrived to take their yearly photo.

The siblings, Justin, Jared and Jessica first started coming when they were toddlers. Now they bring their own children.

"He's the only Santa to our family," said Justin Murdock. "He's the original."

The NorthPark Santa is now giving a new generation a reason to believe and said there's no chance he'll retire soon.

"I want everyone to feel the joy of Christmas to learn that lesson of hope and giving and have a wonderful year to come."

In addition to delivering toys, the NorthPark Center Santa also obtained a doctorate in psychology and blogs about his experience on SantaSays.org.

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