Santa's helpers will soon be out everywhere, and the place they learn their trade is right here in the Mitten State.

The Class Of 2022 Just Graduated From The Charles W. Howard Santa School

"He errs who thinks Santa enters through the chimney. Santa enters through the heart."                                                                                                Charles W. Howard, 1937

One of the most world renowned schools to teach the fine art of being Santa Claus is located right here in Midland, Michigan. it was once referred to as 'the Harvard of Santa Schools' by CBS commentator Bill Geist.

The school is so well known that holding a diploma from the school is an almost sure guarantee to find Christmas time employment as a fully accredited Santa Claus at countless stores, parks and malls nationwide.

The group of Santas and Mrs. Claus' that graduated earlier this month from the Charles W. Howard Santa School in Midland was the school's 85th group of Santas. The school teaches the fine art of portraying arguably one of the most iconic figures in history, Old Saint Nick!

insider via YouTube
insider via YouTube

The Average Graduating Class Is Around 300

About 300 newly trained Santa Clauses per year are put through the rigors of holiday happiness, with classes on how to dress, groom and conduct yourself as a representative of Christmas. They're even taught to use sign language to speak directly to hearing impaired children.

The class even makes a field trip to the biggest Christmas store in the world, Bronner's, just down the road in Frankenmuth.

While this year's class has graduated, you can get registered for the 86th class next October on their web site.

The School Started In Upstate New York And Moved Here In 1968

Charles W. Howard portrayed Santa Claus for years at the famed Macy's Day Christmas parade in New York City. Howard became dismayed at seeing a number of department store Santas look disheveled and with torn garments, and felt their had to be a way to communicate the idea that portraying Santa Claus is something that should be undertaken with great reverence. So he started the school in 1937 with a class of three men in his hometown of Albion, New York.

The school was taken over by Nate Doan in the 1960s, another famous Santa who in 1968 moved the school to Bay City, Michigan.  Tom Valent first attend the CWH Santa School in 1975 when expecting his first child.

CWH School via Facebook
CWH School via Facebook

Valent would later purchase the school and moved it to Bay City in 1968. They later moved it to Midland.

Take a look at how professional Santas are trained, and maybe next year, you, too can be a pro Santa Claus!


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