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Charles Howard dons the red suit at Christmas Park

Posted 25 December 2014 at 12:00 am

By Bill Lattin, Orleans County Historian

ALBION – In this color postcard published around 60 years ago we see Charles Howard as Santa by his sleigh in the stable at Christmas Park.

The message printed on the obverse side is as follows: “Santa’s bag and sleigh all packed with wonderful presents for good girls and boys as he starts out on his annual trip. Which package is which, only he knows, but try and guess which one is yours at Christmas Park.”

Editor’s Note: Howard started a Santa Claus School in Albion at the corner of Phipps Road and Route 31. Howard started the school after noticing many Santas didn’t have training, and didn’t always interact with children well or meet a standard for dress. He established decorum for Santas and his Santa Claus suits became popular.

The school, now in Midland, Mich., still bears Howard’s name. He ran it until his death in 1966.