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Covid has taken its toll on Christmas, with Santas going missing across the United States

Due to the Covid epidemic, antas have gone missing across America this Christmas

Covid has taken its toll on Christmas, with Santas going missing across the United States
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This year, Christmas in America takes on a new appearance, with fewer Santas greeting people on the streets. While some Santas have died, another reason is mall closures owing to an increase in instances.

According to the Independent, the International Brotherhood of Real Bearded Santas (IBRBS), a group representing Santas in the United States, 55 of its Santas died this year.

Other organisations claimed deaths as a result of the epidemic and their Santas' advanced age.

Santa's Last Ride founder Carlo Klemm said he heard of 330 Santa deaths this year, which he called "small tip of the iceberg".

According to IBRBS founder Stephen Arnold, some 1,900 of the organization's Santas are at high risk of contracting Covid or are otherwise sick.

"Santas and Mrs Clauses are generally fat people. Most of us are obese. Many of us have diabetes, a lot of us have heart conditions or bad kidneys or whatever it might be," Stephen Arnold said.

According to Carlo Klemm, the fatality rate among Santas has increased as a result of Covid-19.

Despite some cancellations, IBRBS and other groups saw a 20% increase in demand for 2021.

"None of our Santas were comfortable going back to the way it used to be," Lando Luther, owner of The "Santa Experience" at the Mall of America said.

"They don't mind getting spit up or peed on, Covid-19 is the concern," he said.

This year, Christmas celebrations took a backseat across the world amid the threat of the rapidly surging Omicron cases.

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