Photos With Santa
If you've ever been near a Petsmart store during those all important shopping weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas, then you've probably seen the "Photos With Santa" spectacle. For $9.95 you can have two polaroid pictures taken of your pet with Santa. Santa, the elves and photographer are provided by local animal shelters, which get a portion of each photo package sold. This event works well, the shelter can raise some money, people get to show off their pets and Petsmart makes some extra money selling the stuff that the pets stole off of the shelves while waiting to have their picture taken.
We jumped on the chance to do this, figuring it would be fun for our volunteers, a good way to raise much needed funds and a chance to do more adoptions. (Last year the line for the Santa booth went right past our adoption area. Several people fell in love with a cat while they were waiting in line) We started by lining up our volunteers: we had 12 and 14 year old girls who would be great as elves. We had several people to take pictures. Bob was a somewhat unwilling natural for Santa. We advertised the event like nobody's business. We came up with an action/assignment plan. We were ready.
On the first day of Bob's debut as Santa, the game plan was that he would leave early in the little car, (you know the one that fits in a parking spot) and I would follow later, driving the bohemoth Suburban with the cats that were up for adoption. The first part went ok, however, by the time I got there with the cats, there was not a parking spot to be found. Especially for a large truck. It also turns out that when people are fighting for a parking spot, they will not stop for a somewhat pathetic looking person carrying several cats across a parking lot.
Soon the fun began... Bob's first photo was with a calm dog, no sweat. Then came the yorkie puppy, which also would have been fine, except it kind of got lost in Santa's beard. Next was a full size great dane. Who would have known that a great dane would be that afraid of Santa? At least the dog stopped running somewhere in the warehouse at the back of the store. We were also surprised by how much liquid a miniture dashund could produce while peeing on Santa's leg. At least it wasn't the bull mastiff (a 200 pound dog) that was next in line. We also learned that bull mastiff's pretty much need an entire aisle to themselves. We also found out just how far and fast a tonkinese can jump and and run when it launches itself off of its owner's shoulders and onto the top of a shelf. We also found out that the santa suit is really hot. Especially when you have a lot of furry bodies laying on top of you.
Santa with Bones and Marilyn