Maskless Santa tests positive for COVID-19 after event for children with special needs

By RADIO.COM

Families in South Carolina have been informed that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 after an audience with Santa.

According to The Charlotte Observer, local authorities notified about a dozen families that the man playing Santa at the recent “Sensory Santa” event tested positive for the novel virus shortly after.

The event was designed for children with special needs.

"We sincerely regret this situation and apologize for this inconvenience. If you know of anyone who participated in the Sensory Santa event, please make sure they are aware of the situation," the Fountain Inn city website posted in a notice.

“Santa was not wearing a mask,” City Administrator Shawn Bell confirmed to the outlet, however, in retrospect, he admits he wishes that Santa was masked up.

Bell explained that at the time of the event, Santa was “not experiencing any symptoms.”

“It wasn’t until later that evening that he found out that he had some limited contact with a relative who had tested positive,” he added.

The city recommends families that were in attendance get tested for COVID.

While Fountain Inn does not have a mask requirement, officials encourage residents to cover up and practice other coronavirus safety measures.

Earlier in the week, approximately 50 children were exposed to coronavirus during a photo shoot with a Santa and Mrs. Claus in Georgia.

The couple who played Santa and Mrs. Claus both tested positive for COVID-19 following the event.

Parents who want their kids to get some face time with Santa this season have been forced to get crafty and creative because of the pandemic.

Some Santas have been ensuring social distancing measures by staying behind plexiglass and having sanitation elves by their side. Others are simply embracing virtual visits via Zoom.

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