Santa costume sales not yet at pre-pandemic levels

Adele's of Hollywood Costumes has been dressing Santa Claus for 50 years.
LITTLE ARMENIA (KABC) -- Santa Claus is coming to town, and Adele's of Hollywood Costumes has been in charge of dressing him for 50 years.

"It's a family business and when you come through the door, you feel like you're part of the family. And that is really that's what keeps me coming back," said customer Brian Butler.

Store employees say they prep all year-long for the holiday season. And they say Adele's is one of the largest Santa costume providers in the nation. They even send some overseas to Australia, England and France.

But with the pandemic bringing mall Santa's and parades to a halt last year, employees say business was tough.

Last year, many children made visits to Santa virtually.

"I think it was just as fulfilling because we were able to still see as many children as we had in the years prior," said customer Cortney Lofton.

Pre-pandemic, Adele's would distribute close to 800 Santa costumes during the holiday season. This year, that number is cut in half.

"Now we're making a smaller amount because the demand is not there," said Theresa Saidy, owner of Adele's of Hollywood Costumes.

According to Saidy, mall representatives have told her that many of them are choosing not to have Santa picture kiosks this year due to safety and capacity reasons.

"They're saying next year is going to be the year they're going to go full speed ahead for the Christmas season," said Saidy.

But some Santas are still stepping out this year, so their employees are hard at work.

"Santa is looking forward to interacting and saying hello to everybody," said Lofton

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