In a follow up to a recent story regarding the firing of veteran mall Santa, Mike Graham, the Washington Post reported Thursday that the outcry from mall goers after Graham’s firing has persuaded the Tyson’s Corner Center to consider reinstating him in time for the upcoming holidays.
Graham had become a central holiday mall figure for shoppers who had grown accustomed to interacting with the Santa over the past 18 years. He was stated to have a contract with Tyson’s Corner Center through 2012 to stand in as St. Nick for a five week period during holiday seasons. He was paid $30,000 for his services under the terms of the contract, which also contained a clause for dismissal of Graham without warning. Upon contacting the mall last month, Graham was reportedly told he was fired, but did not have sufficient time to find additional work for the year.
After threats by customers to boycott the shopping center, and huge national media attention, the Post reported that an “agreement in principle” had been reached so that Graham could continue on as Santa for the 2008 holiday season. Mall officials now propose that they are working to correct the situation in the best interest of all parties.