Tell City's Maurices chosen for holiday promotion

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Local kickoff planned as models, camera crews visit Santa Claus

By Vince Luecke

SANTA CLAUS - Shoppers around the nation will experience the town of Santa Claus this holiday season, thanks to a national clothing retailer who chose the community for a marketing campaign featuring small communities.

Maurices, a specialty women's retailer, chose Santa Claus as one of three locations for its year-long "Small Town Charm" campaign. The company's Tell City store played host to the shoot, which brought a crew of nearly 20 to Spencer County Friday through Sunday, including two women modeling fashions. Backdrops included Santa's Candy Castle, Frosty's and for a nighttime shot, Kringle Place Shopping Center.

"This is a beautiful location and we've loved it here," said Monica Hendrickson, marketing manager for Maurices. She accompanied the group of photographers, technicians and assistants. Rain Saturday morning pushed up indoor shooting while sunny conditions Sunday helped crews finish their work. Sunday afternoon's session was at a large statue of Santa on the west side of Indiana 245. Model Amanda Torrance posed next to one of the reindeer near the statue.

Photographs taken during the shoot will be used in Maurices marketing nationwide beginning in November for the holiday season.
Images from the Santa Claus area will be found on in-store signs, at www.maurices.com and in direct mail.

Lynn Fulkerson, who manages the Tell City store, said customers have been buzzing since news broke last week. Not only does the store count Santa Claus residents as customers, but even those who live outside the town are excited. "Everyone is familiar with Santa Claus, so to have a town so close to us featured like this is really exciting," she said.

A ceremony this fall will celebrate the debut of the marketing materials. Two other communities with holiday names, Christmas, Mich., and North Pole, N.Y., are also taking part.

A Maurices travel blog on Facebook showcases the weekend visit.