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Triad Santa begins his 60th season

Santa Cliff Snider says he has listened to the Christmas wishes of nearly three generations of families.

HIGH POINT, N.C. — At 75 years old, Santa Cliff Snider proves that age is just a number. 

"This is my 60th year of wearing the red suit and it's just so hard for me to comprehend that," said Santa Cliff. 

You heard right, six decades of checking his list. Twice of course. 

Keeping the Christmas magic alive for children all across the Triad. 

"I remember when the parents were sitting on my knee. So, I've been through two almost three generations of Children," said Santa Cliff. 

In 1962, Santa Cliff lost his father, uncle, and two cousins in a tragic car crash. 

That very next Christmas, Cliff was asked to dress as Santa for a church mission. 

His first time, wearing the red suit.

"It's like God tapped me on the shoulder, it's like it's just happened last week, he said Cliff I know you've got a broken heart, but by bringing joy and happiness to other children, I'm going to heal your broken heart and that's when my journey began," said Santa Cliff. 

For the 59 Christmases that have followed, Santa Cliff has become one of the most photographed Santas in the world. 

"It's fun to see him off-season. I'll sometimes get to go eat lunch with him and see kids peeking around the corners of booths like I think that is Santa, said Bill Storke.

Bill and Amanda Storke have known Santa Cliff for years. 

Their granddaughter was left a bit speechless as she posed for photos with Santa Cliff.  

Parades, photographs, art pieces, and popcorn tins...Santa Cliff appears just about everywhere this time of year. 

"I'm humbled by the opportunities that have come across my plate so to speak. It's nothing I could've done. I could not have orchestrated any of this," said Santa Cliff. 

Larry Hersberger is behind most of that artwork. 

He has worked with Santa Cliff for more than a decade. 

"All of the Santa's out there follow my artwork, worldwide, and they all have a picture of who on their wall? Santa Cliff. That's not by accident," said Hersberger.

Even with 60 years under his belt, Santa Cliff has no plans to hang up the coat and hat. 

"If I can allow you or other people to discover that inner child, then I feel like I have accomplished my mission," said Santa Cliff. "I feel like I'm doing exactly what God wants me to do."

While Santa is very busy this time of year, he makes many stops across the Triad throughout the Christmas season. 


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