Santa’s hardest job: Tough questions

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 24, 2018

Best part is twinkle in kids’ eyes

Roger Powell is a man of many hats, but this year he donned the Santa Claus hat.

Powell has spent the holiday season entertaining kids at Andalusia Elementary School as Santa, and on Friday, he suited up in the jolly costume once again for the children at the Andalusia Public Library.

“Santa has had a full schedule recently,” Powell said. “I have been dressing up at several locations just entertaining the kids.”

He said that the best part of being Santa is the children he entertains.

“It just warms my heart to see the twinkling eyes of all of the little children,” Powell said. “Especially when they tell me that they have been nice. It’s funny how no one is ever naughty when they see Santa.”

While asking children what they wanted for Christmas at the public library yesterday, one of the children said that he wanted to see his mama. Powell said that answers like those are the hardest part about being Santa.

“It’s hard listening to some of the children’s stories and not getting emotional,” Powell said. “And of course, the beard is itchy.”

Powell, the retired circuit clerk of Covington County, is known for both his art and his acting abilities, which come in handy for playing Santa.

“When kids ask questions and ask me about being in the North Pole or something like that, I usually have to improvise,” Powell said. “I just try to think of a great response and stay on top of it.”

Andalusia Public Library children’s director Caryl Lee Ray said that she wanted to bring Santa to the library because it gives less fortunate kids a chance to see him.

“Some kids just don’t get the chance to see Santa,” Ray said. “By bringing him here, they have a safe space to talk to him and sit on his lap.”

She said that she chose Powell because of the incredible job that he has been doing around the community as Santa.

“My own kids told me that he would be the perfect person to come,” Ray said. “And he has done an amazing job.”