Santa Jerry hits town - a true believer with a passion for the job
We're going to see lots of men in Santa suits in the city over the next two weeks. What sets Santa Jerry apart, however, is not only his 30 years in the trade but also the heart of a true Santa.
'When I put on the suit, it's not like I'm playing him. I really take pride in the job,' he said.
Santa Jerry, whose real name organisers refused to divulge, is teaming up with Santa Jack Sanderson - who starred in the documentary Becoming Santa - until Christmas Day for a series of in-store promotions for Cartier. The pair will also visit charity organisations such as the Po Leung Kuk, Yan Oi Tong and the Art in Hospital programme.
Santa Jerry, a former mechanical engineer, first donned a Santa suit for his family and neighbours. He was later invited to make commercial appearances for shopping malls and events, and decided to take the job more seriously. He later graduated with a Santa Claus master's from a 'Santa School' in Nevada. 'We learned the basics of beard grooming and acting, apprenticing with the other experienced Santas.'
'I'd always believed in Santa. But I felt sad every time Santa arrived at our house, because my dad wasn't there. It wasn't until my dad passed away, when we went through his stuff and found a box of Santa costumes and photos of me sitting on his lap taken over the years, that I realised he had always shared those magic moments with me. I want to pass along that legacy.'