Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Remembering Santa Don Goers

It is with great sadness that I must convey that Santa Don Goers has passed away at the age of 85 on May 24, 2011. Don was Santa’s Village’s main Santa Claus from 1966-1979. My sincerest condolences go out to his family and friends.

An Algonquin, Illinois native, Don came to Santa’s Village in 1959 as a maintenance man and helped out where ever he could. One day he and another park employee were working on the Snowball ride when Santa walked up and asked if they knew of anyone who could help him out and give him a day off. Don spoke up and said “Yes I do…me!”

Don, as Santa, entertained hundreds of thousands of children at the park…including yours truly. I sat on Don’s knee in the 1960s. Not only did Don play the park’s namesake, he could be seen at Christmas events all around the area. A lot of children from the Fox Valley region remember the “REAL SANTA” from the Joseph Spiess Department Store in downtown Elgin. That Santa was Don also.

God bless you Don and thanks for making the magic of Santa come alive to many generations of Chicago area children.
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