‘This feeling is needed.’ Virtual Santas go all out to make Christmas special for kids during the pandemic

CHICAGO -- This year, getting in the holiday spirit requires a dash of hope, a little bit of magic and a Zoom account. Just ask Santa. “(Kids) know COVID-19 is bad, they know to wear their masks and be careful and maybe they won’t see their cousins this Christmas,” said Andre Russell, aka Dreezy Claus. “But when they talk to me, they are just having a ball.” Veteran Santa Clauses and rookie St. Nicks alike are shifting the gears on their sleighs and pivoting to virtual visits with customized backgrounds and classic props while officials plead with people to stay home during the pandemic. While...

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