Santa has lots of helpers in Sugar House.
Most of their work on Santa's Tuff Shed Workshop, located in the Sugar House Plaza, has been done behind the scenes but will be enjoyed by thousands of youngsters and their parents during the Christmas season.Without the generosity and cooperation of John H. Walton, advertising director at Granite Furniture Co. and a director of the Sugar House Chamber of Commerce, Santa may not have had a convenient place to spread the fun and joy of the holidays.
A small gazebo, Santa's former headquarters for about 30 years, was accidentally destroyed during the demolition of Hygeia Ice Co. buildings last spring. Les Reese, executive vice president of the chamber, suggested the possibility of getting a Tuff Shed and developing it into a facility appropriate for Santa.
Gayle Elis, an artist at Granite Furniture Co., drew a sketch, which Walton, Reese and others presented to Tuff Shed manager David Mickelsen, who agreed to construct a custom-made building at no cost.
Through the cooperation of John D. Richards Sr., Granite manager and chief executive officer, Granite carpenters V.W. "Bo" Samuelson and Brad Watson began work on the house. Under the direction of Mike Runyon, of the Salt Lake City Streets Department, who also is a member of the chamber, crews did wiring and painting for the workshop.
Terry Stevens, an owner of Sugar House Glass Co., donated glass and Rex Fabrizo of Steve Ogden's Carpets, the carpet. Dick North, manager of the Deseret Industries Sugar House store, made a weather vane from a sprinkler, a piece of bedrail and a cover off a switch plate, and he contributed a work bench. Don Sevy, an owner of Sugar House Awnings & Canvas Products, contributed awnings; Lynn Howard, manager of F.W. Woolworth Co., and James (Lynn) Jephson, manager of Osco Drug, toys; Margot Kadesch, a chamber director and a dean at Westminster College, secured an old-time wicker rocking horse; and Ron Christensen and Bob Paull of the Newspaper Agency Corp. provided support for a sign created for the shed by Roy Olsen, an NAC artist. Peter Moyes gave architectural advice on the project.
Walton, who is general chairman of Christmas activities in Sugar House, and his wife, Ruth, wallpapered the house, for which a trailer was purchased from Scott's Trailers.
The Tuff Shed, which was painted red with white trim, is about 10 feet high and is 10 by 10 feet and has a 2-foot porch.
Mr. Walton says he is thrilled with the cooperative effort of everybody connected with the project. Santa's new headquarters will be open 4-8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 2-6 p.m. Saturdays.