Eastwood Mall(JM) Despite the closing earlier this fall of the mall's interior, the Eastwood Mall
Santa has vowed to keep his regular hours at the "North Pole outpost" outside the former "Topkapi" store.
Arriving last Wednesday evening by helicopter, he waved to a smattering
of curious onlookers outside the Party City store before twitching his
nose and disappearing down the vacant mall's lone chimney. He hasn't
heard any wish lists yet, but he did have a chance to exchange small
talk with several elderly mall-walkers who use the branch library
entrance. He has also enjoyed the occasional Cinammon-mint Chillatte™
from Joe Mugg's inside Books-a-Million.
Some may suppose that Santa would be too busy to spend his days in a
musty vacant mall -- especially in December. "Ho Ho Ho," bellowed the
Santa, "I bet the REAL Santa is very busy indeed! But
ever since the first malls, like this one, opened in the late 1950's
each one has been granted its own genuine Santa Claus to compile wish
lists and gather whispered intelligence about naughty siblings. I've
been coming to this mall every year since Bill Bolen
cut the ribbon."
The death of a mall is always painful for its assigned Santa, of
course. "Oh sure, I knew it was coming," said the jolly old elf, "Ever
since Pizitz moved across [Crestwood Boulevard] things haven't been the
same. But I'll be here until the wrecking ball comes and they start
making way for that god-forsaken Wal-Mart."