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Passing The Tradition of Santa Claus Across Generations

Michael Rielly

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Passing The Tradition of Santa Claus Across Generations

Santa Michael Rielly of Rhode Island takes Oath for his famous Grandfather

Providence, RI (PRWEB) February 5, 2009 -- Michael Rielly, the grandson of Rhode Island's famed Santa, James D. Rielly, will take the Santa Claus Oath at Celebrate Santa on March 17 in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.


James D. "Jimmy" Rielly's career as Rhode Island's most recognizable Santa Claus spanned over 60 years. He began his Santa Claus career in 1927 and was featured on several national television shows including PM Magazine. Appearing primarily at charitable organizations, hospitals, orphanages, and military bases, he took no money for his appearances.

Over the course of his Santa career, he received literally thousands of letters from celebrities, dignitaries, and politicians including letters from President Eisenhower and Pope John Paul II. In 1979 his name was recorded in the Senate Congressional Record as "James D. Rielly - A Truly Remarkable Santa Claus From Rhode Island".

After the passing of his grandfather in 1991, grandson Michael Rielly took over the role as Santa Claus. In his grandfather's honor, Michael appears at many of the same charitable organizations and hospitals his grandfather visited.

Hundreds of Santa, Mrs. Claus, and Helpers will be attending the upcoming Celebrate Santa Convention this March in Gatlinburg. Part of the opening ceremonies of the convention will be the taking of the Santa Claus Oath, which was dedicated last fall in Santa Claus, Indiana.

"We are very happy to have Santas that have wonderful family legacies attending the convention." stated Joe Moore, coordinator of Celebrate Santa. "Their families' traditions are all part of our history."

Celebrate Santa is an expo for Santa, Mrs. Claus, elves, and Helpers from around the world and features workshops, a parade, and an industry showcase.

"I know Papa would have loved meeting everyone at Celebrate Santa!" said Michael Rielly, Director of Media and Public Relations for Celebrate Santa 2009 and the founder of ClausNET.com. "He took the role of Santa Claus very seriously and would have been proud to be associated with such a fine group of men and women."

About Michael Rielly

Mr. Rielly has portrayed Santa Claus for over 17 years and is a third generation Santa Claus. His grandfather James D. "Jimmy" Rielly, began his Santa Claus career in 1927 and was recognized in the US Congressional Record as "A Truly Remarkable Santa Claus From Rhode Island".

When not appearing as Santa Claus, Mr. Rielly works in sales and marketing with over 20 years experience in Internet and technology related companies where he has served in various roles; founder, board member, and business development.

Mr. Rielly is also the founder of ClausNET.com, the world's premier Santa Claus social network and resource for Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, and Elves for the purposes of sharing stories, advice, news, and information.

About The Santa Claus Oath author Phillip L. Wenz

Phillip L. Wenz donned his first Santa Claus suit at the age of four. By the time he was fourteen he was in his first parade, and by the ripe old age of twenty-four, he became the year round Santa Claus for the iconic Santa's Village (www.santafromsantasvillage.webs.com) in Dundee, Illinois. An association he has now had for more than twenty years.

About Celebrate Santa

Celebrate Santa (www.celebratesanta.com) is an annual gathering and exposition for those who bring joy and happiness to children young and old through the portrayal of Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus. This annual event begins 2009 on the 70th anniversary of the very first official gathering of Santas in New York in 1939.

The three day event includes over 30 comprehensive workshops for those who wish to learn and improve upon their personification of Santa and Mrs. Claus. The in-depth educational sessions are conducted by seasoned Santa Claus professionals. Open during the event will be Santa's Showcase - a unique exhibition open to the public featuring thousands of Christmas and Santa Claus related products and services.

About ClausNET

Launched in 2007, ClausNET (www.ClausNET.com) is the premier Santa Claus community for men and women dedicated to the faithful portrayal of Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, Elves, and all others who devote their time to bringing the magic of Christmas to children and adults throughout the world!

ClausNET.com is the Internet's largest resource and social network for Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, and Elves for the purposes of sharing stories, advice, news, and information. Most importantly, ClausNET brings people together to build friendships that help spread happiness to the true believers of Santa Claus - the child inside of us.


Michael J. Rielly


Santa Joe Moore

Celebrate Santa


(865) 244-5230




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