St. Nicks learn tricks of the trade at Santa School

MIDLAND, Mich. - Santa Claus came to town. Dozens of times over, as it turns out.

More than 100 St. Nicks made up the most recent class of the Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School in Midland, Mich.

The Santas, as well as some Mrs. Clauses, received instruction on makeup, wardrobe, sign language, reindeer care and communication during the three-day seminar.

The Howard school bills itself as the longest continuously running Santa Claus school in the world. Tuition is $425 for new students and $395 for returnees.

Doug Dodge thinks it is money well spent. The Burlington, Mass., resident, who attended his second Santa school this year, says it's important to do everything possible to prepare to take on the "awesome responsibility" of portraying the jolly old elf.

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