The annual holiday ritual of waiting in long lines so your children can appeal to Santa Claus for presents is officially upon us. But as America’s collective skin color skews increasingly darker, so are the men dressing up as St. Nicholas to accommodate the demand from families of color who want their children to see a Kris Kringle they can ethnically identify with.
Enter Christmas 2017, where there are seemingly more Black Santas peppered across the nation’s map than ever before. You can find them at malls, churches, schools, community centers and maybe even just walking down your block, depending on where you live. But the overarching point here is that you can find them easier than ever, which wasn’t really the case just a few years ago.
From the Pacific northwest to rural Georgia, and a handful of spots in between, the U.S. has more Black Santas on deck than ever before.
But to simplify things a bit for those looking for them, News One has created this handy little interactive tool to help you map where exactly to find one or more Black Santas during this holiday season. Just click on the point located nearest to you to find the closest Black Santa to your town.
Strangely enough, or perhaps not strangely at all depending on who you ask, there are a number of Black Santa Clauses concentrated in Indianapolis and North Carolina. On the other hand, not surprisingly, the same is true for the metro Atlanta area.
Maybe most notably is Santa Larry, the Black Santa Claus who last year began making appearances at the Mall of America in suburban Minneapolis. He has triumphantly resumed his post this season at the largest shopping center in the U.S., an indication of the type of demand he and other Black Santas have generated in recent years.
But more important that reinforcing the fictional legend of a seasonal gift-giver based on the premise of good behavior, parents who take their kids to see Black Santa will get to introduce the idea of diversity and Black identity into their children’s collective consciousness.
“We are so bombarded by Caucasian images of things that are considered good, that I want [my children] to have the experience, too,” Crystal Mozell, an African-American living in Los Angeles, told the International Business Times in 2015.
Please let us know if we missed any locations where to find Black Santa and we will update our map.
Mapping Black Santa Claus: How And Where To Find St. Nicks Of Color was originally published on newsone.com