Photo courtesy: Tim Talley
High Point, NC -- A High Point man is being inducted into the International Santa Claus Hall of Fame, 50 years after he first donned the red suit.
The High Point Enterprise reports that Cliff Snider was among six new inductees announced Friday at the Hall of Fame in Santa Claus, Ind.
The 65-year-old is the first North Carolinian to make the ranks.
Snider is being recognized both for his longevity at portraying jolly ol' St. Nicholas and for emphasizing the spiritual side of Christmas. Snider often promises to pray for children he meets.
Snider's been featured in Guideposts magazine and the Christian TV program "The 700 Club."
He first portrayed Santa in 1962, as a shy, overweight 15-year-old. Snider says he was depressed over his father's death, and the experience transformed him.
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The Associated Press