Northwest Santa Workshop Meeting Minutes

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    7th Annual Northwest Santa Workshop
    Sponsored by NORPAC Santas
    Nov. 3-5, 2016

    Minutes

    Nov. 3.The conference took place at the Great Wolf Lodge in Grand Mound, Washington.
    On Thurs. afternoon/evening, Nov. 3, several NORPAC members arrived and prepared the conference room for the Santa Workshop on Nov. 4-5. Also that evening, Gene and Trish Sanders hosted the hospitality room.

    Nov. 4. Ron Kearns presented a morning devotional, Keeping Christ in Christmas. There were 21 participants. Ron reminded all of us that the meaning of God, and of Christmas, is love.

    Following registration the conference officially opened at 9:00 with Ron welcoming everyone. As we began, there were 40 participants, including two who had not attended a previous conference – Santa Guy Lee of Sacramento and Santa Pat Oster of Port Orchard. Trever Waltos led the Santas in the Santa Oath written by Santa Phillip Wenz, and Tracey Galland led the ladies in the Mrs. Claus Oath written by the Mrs. Claus Commission.

    Panel Presentation. Scheduling/Booking Agents was facilitated by Jerry Galland. On-line companies such as Gig Master and Gig Salad are being used by several of our members to help secure bookings. Agencies such as Pro Entertainment, Live Wires, Merry Makers, Santa for Hire, and National Santas were also mentioned.
    Ron Kearns shared copies of a packet of information he developed several years ago to help introduce himself to prospective clients.

    Healthy Santa. A presentation by Dr. Shawna Purcell was scheduled but Dr. Purcell was unable to attend due to a family emergency. In lieu of that presentation, Trever facilitated a discussion on a wide range of topics. Among these were:
    • “Naughty or Nice List” and other phone apps available through the Apple Store or the Google Store
    • “Thrive Experience” Products from the Le-vel Company that a few members are taking as a dietary supplement. Information can be obtained online at Le-vel.com. Our discussion does not represent an endorsement of Le-vel by NORPAC.
    • Beard and hair care products (see relevant links on the NORPAC website).
    • Sources of clothing (Gentleman’s Emporium was mentioned)
    • Sources for Santa glasses (Zennioptical.com was mentioned)
    • Dry Cleaners in the area for cleaning Santa suits. Parkland Cleaners (11102 Pacific Avenue S., Tacoma) and Quality Cleaners in Sumner (1229 Main St.) were both recommended.
    • Fabric Depot as a good local source for Santa fabrics.
    • GameBibs.com is a good source of red or red/white striped “bib” overalls. They also carry red/white striped cargo pants and cargo shorts.

    Following lunch, we reconvened with 34 participants.

    Panel Presentation. Mrs. Claus was facilitated by Nancy Smith and Tracey Galland. Tracey told us about the “Mrs. Claus Sisterhood” offered through Santa Ed Taylor’s Santa Conservatory. Nancy shared several books she’s enjoyed sharing with children, such as What Santa Can’t Do, Applesauce for Mrs. Claus, and Mrs. Claus Explains It All. Some discussion also regarding “The Forgotten Children’s Fund,” (see link to this on NORPAC website).

    Pictures in the Pool took place at 3:00, with about 10 participants. The afternoon included free time and dinner on our own.

    Santa Olympics, a new event this year, took place after dinner was developed and organized by Jerry and Tracey Galland. It included a variety of fun activities that challenged the participants!

    Christmas Karaoke facilitated by Santa Ramsey Cowlishaw, was a big hit again this year.

    Nov. 5. Ron again led a devotional on Where is the Christ in Christmas? His central message was that the only way to keep Christ in Christmas is to keep Christ in your heart! 24 participants.

    Panel Presentation on Business Organization by Randy Cook and Dennis Gorley. Randy shared a packet Notes on Marketing and Tax Audit Triggers. He also shared several ideas for marketing yourself and how he’s incorporated these into his website, http://www.mybestsanta.com. He also discussed “search engine optimization” for helping to move your website up the Google ranks using key words that people use in their searches. Randy pointed out that those booking Santas are accustomed to using the QR codes, or QRC’s, and that QRC’s ought to be included on business cards and other promotional materials. Finally, Randy recommended “Miles IQ” app as an easy way to track business mileage. Dennis shared 2015 Salary Survey Synopsis and asked that we complete a 2016 Salary Survey. Dennis also discussed the 50/50 raffle and did an informal survey asking, “Do you favor excluding basket raffle proceeds from the 50/50 total.?” In other words, let the 50/50 raffle standalone By a show of hands, about 15 voted to separate 50/50 from raffle basket proceeds, and 4 voted to leave it as it is. The Exec. Board will discuss this input.

    Story Telling/Song Sharing.
    • The Night Before Christmas, Trever
    • The Gigantic Enormous Present, Jim Beidle
    • The Night Before Christmas, Russell Albright
    • The First Christmas Night, Ron
    • Santa & the Snowdrop, Ramsey
    • Santa Duck, Nancy Smith
    • Santa’s Prayer on Christmas Eve, Sherry Highfill
    • The Night Before Christmas (in song), Gene

    Ornament Exchange & Raffle Drawings for baskets were held. A total of 33 baskets/gifts were donated and awarded to those with winning tickets.

    50/50 Drawing. Dennis G. announced that $1046 worth of raffle tickets were sold, resulting in a 50/50 “pot” of $523.00. Gene Sanders held the winning ticket for the 50/50 drawing.

    Lunch Buffet of “picnic” foods was enjoyed – hot dogs, hamburgers, corndogs, salads, etc. There was lots of food!

    Entertainment. Danny Vernon’s “Illusion of Elvis” Show was our entertainment after lunch. Any guests at the Great Wolf Lodge were welcome to attend Danny’s show, and a total of 78 people enjoyed the hour-long performance.

    Parade. The final event of the conference, and a highlight for all that participated, was our traditional parade through the hallway and lobby of the lodge with everyone in full attire – Santas, Mrs. Clauses, elves, and our favorite Grinch.

    Thank you to everyone who attended and participated in this year’s workshop, and special thanks to those listed in the program for their specific contributions. The Exec. Committee of NORPAC will meet early in 2017 to review the written evaluations and to begin talking about how the workshop might be improved upon in the future.

    Respectfully,
    Dale Scott, NORPAC Secretary

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