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La Palmera Mall visits with Santa different, but still special

Visits with Santa at La Palmera mall Turn to the New Normal
Posted at 4:51 PM, Dec 03, 2020

There are three weeks left until Christmas Day, just enough time to do some shopping and maybe order this year's Christmas cards.

Unfortunately the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has changed some traditions, such as taking a picture with Santa Claus.

“I remember when I was little I used to take pictures with him,” said Kaylee Ramirez.

Visiting Santa is different in 2020, but the Arispe family said it has visited Santa every year and this year wasn't going to change that.

“It is a little bit different this year, but, like, I said 'It's OK. As long as it's keeping everyone safe, we can adjust.”

One of the big changes this year is a thick sheet of clear acrylic plastic standing between Santa and his guest, but that will be incorporated in this year's photo. Appointments also must be made for photos with Santa, and there is also a virtual option to Zoom with Jolly Old St. Nick.

“It was just so important to us to be able to still be able to have Santa photos available, so we had to come up with a solution to be able to still have Santa here and for it to be safe,” said La Palmera Mall General Manager Amanda Sanchez.

The safety of others was one of the biggest concerns this year. With that in mind, some of the joys of Christmas will not be the same.

However, Santa Claus is certain to sitting in his chair waiting for a visit.

“I'm sorry I don’t get to hug you, and I'm sorry you don’t get to hug me," Santa said. "But know that I am here for you. If you have any questions you want to ask Santa, come in and talk to me please.”