Santa is just a phone call away at Martinsburg store

West Virginia

MARTINSBURG, W.Va (WDVM) — Flowers Unlimited in Martinsburg wasn’t allowing COVID-19 to stop their tradition of hosting Santa Claus in their store – so they set up something different for kids to talk to him.

“We wanted to make sure the kids were able to talk to Santa, to see Santa, to make their traditions pretty uniform like nothing really changed,” said co-owner Mark Jordan.

Store workers as well as their Santa, Drew Catrow, started brainstorming back in March how to maintain distance and safety while allowing kids to come talk – and the answer came in the form of two old-time red phones.

“We just couldn’t let this Christmas go by without the children being able to visit and talk to Santa Claus,” said Catrow.

Santa sits in one of the store’s windows with one of the phones, which is wired up directly to the other one outside that kids have access to. One of the store’s employees, or “elves,” sanitizes the phone thoroughly between each family.

“That’s one of the big things we wanted to make sure is that everybody feels safe and feels comfortable while they’re here,” Jordan said.

Families are overjoyed that they can still bring children to talk to Santa.

“It’s nice to be able to still do traditional things like this with the whole COVID thing going on,” said Kara Kreps.

Kreps brought Ashton Charrette, who was excited to ask for toys, to visit Santa.

“It makes him happy, so it makes me happy,” she said.

“This is my Christmas. Giving the joy and sharing the love of the holiday with the little ones,” Catrow said.

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