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Mary Brotherton
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Inside my Brain

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Thursday, February 24, 2005

Senior Santa Still Needs Special Elves

This was the first time I've included information for a sidebar - it gave me the opportunity for more research and I found it enjoyable!

Most people remember a time when Santa and his Elves lived and worked exclusively at the North Pole. But Santa needs more Elves, even here in Florida. Even though Santa’s Elves are already too numerous to count, Santa knows he still needs more helpers. Some of Santa’s most favorite Elves can be found locally at Brevard County Triad.

Triad is comprised of nearly three dozen private and public organizations that work together in a partnership to provide services and address concerns of Senior Citizens. One of the more exciting and fun events is the Triad Senior Santa program which is in its fifth year. Last year, Triad members and volunteer Elves from the State Attorney’s office prepared over 350 gift bags for local area residents.

As the holiday season approaches, we all find ourselves thinking of our families and friends, and looking forward to special days to give and receive beautifully wrapped gifts. No holiday feels as good as when we share with those who need us. This year you can become one of Santa’s special Elves and help Triad reach our very special neighbors.

Brevard County nursing homes and assisted care facilities have hundreds of residents who sadly cannot look forward to family dinners and traditions involving elaborate gift openings. Senior Santa and his Elves bring more than donated gifts during the lonely holiday season:. They bring holiday joy and a spirit of community.

Triad accepted donations of unwrapped gifts as well as money to purchase needed items at SeniorFest which was held on October 15th at the Melbourne Auditorium. Santa’s Elves will continue to accept donations at drop off locations throughout the county.

Another favorite Elf is Ellen Jean Dwyer, an artist who donated a hectic week of her talented time to paint a mural of the Senior Elf himself. Using acrylics and a favorite old book from her children’s traditional Christmas collection, she created the masterpiece that gave Saint Nick’s personality to the SeniorFest, this year.

Despite a fulfilling career as a nurse, Ms. Dwyer is a lifelong artist who said, “My painting always opens new avenues”. She enjoys working with oils, but said that her favorite medium changes as her life changes. She’s a sculptress, a painter, and skilled in portraiture. She is currently working on a series of portraits of her 20 months old granddaughter, Sophie and her newborn sister.

The Daytona artist is contemplating doing a portable mural for her granddaughter, as well as a book. She said, “I like to do what moves me, what I feel like doing at the time.” When her friend and tennis partner, Jill Blue-Gaines asked her to do the painting of Senior Santa, she felt compelled to help any way that she could. She said that she “likes to pay it forward,” and enjoyed creating the mural while she packed for a trip to New York to visit her newborn grandchild. This is Ms. Dwyer’s first work for Triad and with Senior Santa, but it won’t likely be her last.

Call TRIAD at 321-631-2747 for more information about how you, too, can become a favored Elf.


Senior Santa still needs Elves. Triad still need items to be donated. You can be a special Elf by dropping off unwrapped items at one of the locations listed below.