In “Creepy Christmas: Exploring the haunted history of Santa, Krampus, Belsnickel, and More,” we turn our inquisitive eye toward the backstory of America’s most beloved holiday to discover traditions, legends, and lore that are filled with frights and chills. In the episode, we travel to the Yankee Candle headquarters in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, to interview Santa Claus about his entire life, from his boyhood in Myra in the fourth century, to his sainthood, and how he went on to become one of the most famous figures on earth.
We investigate some of Saint Nicholas’s dark cohorts, like Der Belsnickel and Krampus. The Smith-Harris House in Niantic, Connecticut, celebrates the Yuletide season with a visit from the Belsnickel each December. Thankfully, this Belsnickel doesn’t beat the naughty children of Niantic with a stick like he did traditionally back in Germany. In Providence, Rhode Island, we’ll attend the Krampus Society of New England’s annual Krampus Ball, filled with Krampus figures from the region celebrating a monster who was known to snatch up naughty children and eat them at Christmastime.
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