Santa Family Reunion
     Gatlinburg Convention Center
    March 14th-18th 2019

Smoky Mountain Children's Home in Sevierville, TN
 is our 2019 Chosen Charity

March 14, 2017

SAFE TRAVELS to all who are attending Santa Family Reunion 2017.   The Team is on their way and many others will be arrivng early to enjoy the beautiful City of Gatlinburg!! 
We are soooo EXCITED to see Y'All !!!!
Godspeed !!

Santa Family Reunion Team Members

Newsletter 21
March 7, 2017

The Santa Family Reunion Team Members are very busy finishing up on details for the convention before we travel to Gatlinburg, TN

Registration has now closed.  Thank You to ALL who have registered to be attendees of Santa Family Reunion 2017.

Vendor Show ONLY Passes for unregistered guests are available at PRE-PAY price of $5.00 through March 12th  for ALL 4 days starting at 4:00 pm on Friday March 16th in Event Store

Fashion Show submissions to Trish Parris End TOMORROW 3/8/17 on FASHION SHOW PAGE

UPDATED Agenda on website for Workshop Presenters:  see AGENDA PAGE

Don’t forget the Secret Santa Charity Auction wrapped gift items !! 

Joan & John Wilder still accepting Parade Registrations on PARADE PAGE
Newsletter 20
February 28, 2017

Santa Family Reunion Parade of Santas….

A letter from Phil Wenz:

“There will be plenty of Christmas Spirit in Gatlinburg at Santa’s Family Reunion’s…PARADE OF SANTAS! The parade, March 18th, will be filmed by Jay Rumple Designs ( and will be available to order at his Booth #32 at the trade show. The filming will be a three-camera set up including a 12ft crane boom camera, a hand held, and the main camera is of high definition. There will be a “filming zone” on the parade route. Pre-filmed portions of the voice overs and music will be added in post-production. The final product will be a syndicated version of the parade. It is my pleasure to work with Jay and of course John and Joan Wilder on the production and blocking of this event.”

Phillip L. Wenz
Santa Claus Productions

ALL vacationing and local Santas, Mrs. Clauses and Elves in the Gatlinburg, TN area, as well as our Registered Attendees, are INVITED to join in this Santa Family Reunion Sponsored Parade. 
This will be one grand time as we Share our Love of Christmas with the thousands of spectators that line the sidewalks to experience this wonderful event! 
Please be sure someone in your state group, organization or association has filled out and submitted a parade form on our website so you can be announced & included in the post-production DVD.
Don’t forget to bring your banners!


Newsletter 19
February 22, 2017

***Don't miss out on all the fun beginning Friday March 17th at Noon at Ober Gatlinburg - shop and have lunch with Charlie Thomas.

***Free Tram Ride To & From Ober Gatlinburg for ALL Registered Attendees on Friday!!!

***Meet and Greet with refreshments and dessert snacks   

***Secret Santa Charity Auction - Enjoy a whole lot of Fun while raising money for Safe Space our 2017 Sponsored Charity!!!

***Vendor Showcase filled with delightful items to purchase!!

***On Saturday after our “Santa Family Reunion Sponsored Parade” enjoy a Buffet Luncheon followed by Workshop #1 filled with laughter by the Great Joe Barney

***Come back Saturday Evening for a Social Time devoted to “Exclusively Mrs. Claus” or “HO HO Santa”!!!

***Start Sunday Morning out with “Keeping Christ in Christmas” with Cliff Snider, intro by Phil Wenz, and music by Phil & Diane Gurganus.

***Then on to Workshop #2 by Leon McBryde and Steve & Deb Gillham

***Free to ALL Registered Attendees the Santa Woodland Nature Hike with Heather Townshend

***After Lunch you have two Workshop #3 Choices-ASL by Rebecca Bennett Weedo or Social Media & Marketing by Bob Boyer & Phil Wenz!!!

***Don't forget the Sunday Night Buffet Dinner Banquet with Talent by our very own Santa Family members!!!

***Monday is Workshop #4 with Speakers and Fashions and Luncheon Buffet!!!

***Finish out your 4th and Final Day with a Closing Ceremony by Phil Wenz and reciting of the Santa Claus Oath, the Mrs. Claus Pledge, and
the first time public reciting of the Elf Oath


February 6, 2017

We just recently found out our Talent Show Form on the website was not working.  That has now been fixed !!  There is room for a few more acts, so please submit your entry form ASAP on Talent Show page so Debra Ann can get the line up and program finished !! 

We are still accepting application entry forms for the Fashion Show~Workshop~Luncheon.  Trish Parris needs to get the line-up for that done as well.  Please submit our entry form ASAP on Fashion Show page.

Last but not least, the Santa Family Reunion Parade down the main street of Gatlinburg is a well attended & well anticipated parade.  EVERYONE is welcome to join in this spectacular parade; however we need to know you are coming for the line up.  Please submit your parade entry to Joan & John Wilder ASAP on Parade page.


Febuary 3, 2017
  • We wish to THANK all those who have REGISTERED to attend Santa Family Reunion 2017 in Gatlinburg, TN March 17th thru March 20th!!
  • Your registrations have made this convention a reality !  
  • Registrations continue to come in daily and we are continuing to work behind the scenes getting everything ready for your arrival !!
  • Registration will remain open until March 1st or until we meet our 300 limit.  We hope you are able to join us!!



January 28, 2017

The Santa Family Reunion Team is continuing to work diligently to make this a memorable convention for our Registered Attendees.

  • We are delighted to announce the Formal Photo opportunity that will take place in Ballroom C before the Talent Show and Banquet Buffet Dinner on Sunday, March 19th.
  • Kyle Wilson of Rocky Hill Reindeer from Knoxville, TN will be providing a sleigh and reindeer (taxidermy) to be used for our formal photography background with festive trimmings and accessories.
  • Santa Shannon Settles from North Carolina will be using his state of the art photo equipment and experienced knowledge to provide a treasured photo!  

Start planning your “Fashion Attire” for this special evening with your Santa Family.  It is going to be a great fun filled entertaining evening with a delicious buffet meal for your enjoyment.

January 24, 201

  • ONLY Registered Attendees & Vendors will be admitted into the convention center on Friday, March 17th, 2017.
  • On Friday, March 17th, as a courtesy to our Registered Attendees of Santa Family Reunion, we are opening the Vendor Showcase to only Registered Attendees with Photo ID Badge.
        We want to give our registered attendees the “first opportunity” to visit with vendors and make purchases. 
  • The Vendor Showcase will be OPEN to the PUBLIC starting on Saturday, March 18th through Monday, March 20th  
  • All non registered guests will need a “Guest Pass” to enter the Vendor Showcase March 18th – March 20th  

Please Note:  our Schedule of Events has been updated


January 14, 2017

Santa Family Reunion has decided to do a fun creative “Secret Santa” Charity Auction for “Safe Space” instead of the usual type silent auction.

This will be a super fun action packed auction sure to bring a great time for all !!

We will be accepting “wrapped” gift donations from attendees, vendors, and local businesses.

  • Please bring your wrapped donation gift with “hint clues”  to the Meet & Greet on Friday March 17th at 6:30 pm
  • The “wrapped” gift must have “hint clues”, sentence or words, provided by the donor as to what might be in that gift wrap !!  The auctioneer announcer will give those “hint clues” as “bidders” hold up their paddle to bid on the “wrapped” gift.  The winning bidder will unwrap the gift for all to see !!
  • ALL proceeds from this “Secret Santa” Charity Auction will be going to our chosen charity “Safe Space”.

Van Wolfe, Executive Director of “Safe Space”, will be in attendance of the auction to answer any questions about the charity and accept donations.
Payments for winning bids from the auction will be taken by “Safe Space” by cash, check or credit card.

For further questions about the auction, please contact Team Member - Dee Pilette at:  SANTAGUS25@GMAIL.COM   

Don’t miss out on this FUN FILLED “Secret Santa” Charity Auction which will be held at 7:00 pm at the Meet & Greet on Friday, March 17th in the Mills Auditorium of the Convention Center !

January 13, 2017


  • In the words of Gatlinburg Mayor Mike Werner, who lost his home and business in the fire, "If you really want to do something for Gatlinburg, come back and visit us."
  • Tourism is our lifeblood, and we need your help to sustain our businesses and to ensure folks have jobs. Your visitation makes that possible.
  • When you make your spring break plans, come see us!!!!

January 12, 2017


Saturday March 17th


Monday March 20th

LUNCHEON BUFFET IN                      

Please check out the Menus for Buffet Luncheons and Banquet Dinner Buffet by CLICKING on FOOD MENU TAB at top Left hand side of webpage. 


January 11, 2017


The city of Gatlinburg is known for their parades, especially the parade of Santas!!  The local shops and restaurants are very excited that we will be back in Gatlinburg in 2017 for a Santa Family Reunion Parade !   It's Spring Break and the streets will be lined with tourists and locals to join in the fun on Saturday, March 18th.  It is an overwhelming experience to spread the Joy and Love of Christmas as we walk and ride down the street visiting with children of all ages !

John and Joan Wilder are once again co-chairing this huge undertaking of organizing the parade of Santas, Mrs. Claus, and Elves which will include local establishments as well ! 

Please submit your applicant entry form ASAP to be a part of this Grand Parade down the main street of Gatlinburg through our website by clicking on the PARADE tab at the top of the page on the Left hand side. 

For questions please email or call & leave a message for Joan:  Phone 865-429-0301   E-Mail:
Please Note:
If you are entering a Vehicle, Trailer, or Float in the Parade you will need to show Proof of Insurance on March 18th at the beginning of the parade.


January 7, 2017

SANTA FAMILY REUNION SOCIAL TIME UPDATE                                                          
We know how much everyone looks forward to learning and sharing ideas with each other at Santa & Mrs. Claus gatherings, especially at conventions when we get to visit with each other from other states !  Some of the best ideas are learned at these social sharing gatherings.

We have added a special social sharing time to our Agenda on Saturday evening March 18th

7:00PM - 10:00PM  “Exclusively Mrs. Claus” Social Time - Tennessee Ballroom D
For those who portray Mrs. Claus and those who are thinking about portraying Mrs. Claus, as well as those who actually are Mrs. Claus because they take care of or live with Santa.

7:00PM - 10:00PM  “Ho Ho Santa” Social Time - Mills Auditorium
For those who portray Santa, who are thinking of portraying Santa, and who are Santa.

We are continuing to update our “Schedule of Events” page on our website as we get plans finalized.  Please check back often !!   More announcements to come !

January 5, 2017


Trish Parris is ready for applicants to submit their entry to show their unique fashions at the Fashion Show Luncheon on Monday March 20th in the Mills Auditorium of the Gatlinburg Convention Center

Now is the time to submit your entry as it takes a lot of time to coordinate this event.
Please click on the Fashion Show Tab at top Left hand side of webpage for detailed information of categories and submission of entry form. 

Trish Parris will be responding to your submission entry once received.
If you have any questions regarding the Fashion Show before you submit your entry, please feel free to contact Trish.  
She can be reached by e-mail at:  

December 30, 2016


I am ready to start the line up for the Santa Family Talent Show Banquet to be held on Sunday March 19th at the Mills Auditorium

We have several very talented individuals in the Santa Family Community.  I would love to hear from you if you are interested in joining the show !  

It can be anything from magic acts, storytelling, poetry, juggling, comedy acts, singing acts, playing any musical instrument such as banjo, guitar, trumpet, violin, harmonica, etc. OR playing on the upright Kimball Piano (provided)!    It will be a fun filled evening of entertainment !   “The Great Joe Barney” will be our “Master of Ceremonies” for the evening.

Now is the time to submit your entry.  Please click on the Talent Show Tab on the top Left hand side of the webpage for detailed information and submission of entry form. (If you get an “error” message when submitting the form, just close it.  It will then say your submission has been completed.) 

As I receive the entries, I will send a confirmation directly back to you at your e-mail address you filled out on the form.  Please make sure your e-mail is correctly typed in. 

Thank You,
Debra Ann

December 30, 2016

We are super excited to announce that ReBecca Weedo Bennett  will be doing a 2 hr sign language (ASL) workshop with handouts to take home on Sunday, March 19th at the Santa Family Reunion.

For those who have previously met and learned from Rebecca, I am sure you will all agree that Rebecca captivates an audience and makes learning sign language so much fun !
Her lovely daughter Daytona will be joining her for the seminar as well as Lisa her interpreter.

ASL shares an underlying organization with spoken language and has its own syntax and grammar.  ASL is for everyone, especially Santa & Mrs. Claus !

ReBecca designs her seminar to include Santa, Mrs. Claus, and Elves with Christmas sign language usage as well as daily basic signing

December 28, 2016

We are very happy to announce the following:

ALL Vendors will be able to set up on Friday, which will make the whole venue much more cohesive.

We were able to get Tennessee Ballroom A for our Vendors and will be connected to Tennessee Ballroom B

This means that you will be able to set up on Friday morning and sell all four days instead of setting up on Saturday and only selling 3 days.

The New Vendor Layout Map and Vendor List is available through the Vendor List TAB on the Left hand side of web page.


October 27, 2016
 Greetings to everyone!!  I wanted to get one more newsletter out before the Santa Season “formally” begins for many.
REGISTRATION Information:   We officially have over 100 registrations as of today to attend the Santa Family Reunion March 17th - 20th in Gatlinburg, TN
We will STOP taking registrations to attend the Santa Family Reunion when we reach 310 people.
We need a partial deposit to hold a spot for you to attend.  This is done through the Event Store on the website.
If you make a partial deposit, final payment to attend must be received on or before January 15th
You can add on Options at a later date but before February 15th   No money will be accepted after February 15th for add on options OR anything else.
BRIGHT YELLOW button on top of web page to click on PAY HERE for registration.
BRIGHT GREEN button on top of web page to click on for hotel LODGING information.
Detailed information is on our website:    We have several pages of information with a MENU Tab on the TOP Left hand side of the page.
The website REMAINS OPEN for registrations throughout the season.
Sherri and I are reachable through e-mails as well throughout the season.


October 23, 2016


The Santa Family Reunion Team is very pleased to announce that the 28 Booths in our Vendor Showcase Tennessee Ballroom B at the Convention Center have ALL been RESERVED.  These 28 vendor booths will open on Friday, March 17th at 1:00 p.m. with early shopping for attendees

A confirmed list of these vendors include:

Bee Whimsical Designs - Deborah Mumaugh - Booth #16

iknowsanta - Phil & Diane Gurganus - Booth #14

Little Darlin's Creations - Darline and Rex Ray - Booth #3 & #4

J & R Santaprises - Elizabeth Rasmusson - Booth #13

Mrs. C's Claus-et - Debra Medley - Booth #7

Mrs. Claus Creations - Cheryl Saxrud & Santa Carlucci - Booth #1 & #2

ProKnows - Leon McBryde - Booth #5

SantaSCents - Santa Randy & Debra Ann Gabrelcik - Booth #11 - Sherri Heath & Dale Nowak - Booth #10 & #13 - Steve Gillham - Booth #6

Upscale St Nick - Iris & Dan Broyles - Booth #24 & #25

The full list will be published on the vendor list webpage as payments are processed and confirmed!!

“Now what ?” you ask !!   Well, we have opened another section which is Ballroom D in the Convention Center!!  There will be 12 additional vendor booths available in Ballroom D.  These booths will be set up on Saturday, March 18th in the morning and open for business at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday afternoon !!   The divider between Ballroom B and Ballroom D will be partially opened so the area connects for a nice flow between the Vendor Showcase and easy access from two door ways to shop at your convenience during the Santa Family Reunion.


Friday  March 17th        1 pm to 9 pm  (Ballroom B)
Saturday March 18th   10 am to 9 pm (Ballroom B)   1pm to 9pm (Ballroom D opens & connects for complete Vendor Showcase
Sunday March 19th      10 am to 6 pm  Vendor Showcase Open  
Monday March 20th      8 am to 5 pm   Vendor Showcase Open

October 19, 2016

Greetings Santa Family:

Sherri and I would like to extend our prayers and well wishes to all who have been affected by Hurricane Matthew’s devastation
as many continue to recover. 

For some of you, this may be the first newsletter you received in regards to the Santa Family Reunion 2017 which will be held in Gatlinburg, TN - March 17-21st

The Summer seemed to fly by way too fast for us in the northern states.  The beautiful colored leaves of Fall in Minnesota are rapidly falling as we have seen our first snowflakes in some areas already.
Very soon, in just a few short weeks, some Santas and Mrs. Clauses will be leaving for malls to begin their season in the chair.  Others will be busy with photograph studio work, tree lighting ceremonies and the start of holiday events and parties.  We wish everyone a safe and successful season filled with the love and laughter of children !

You can get registered with a partial deposit to hold your full registration or partial registration. Final payments will be due January 15th. 

Please read ALL the details on the Registration Info page:
**Please note we have added a Partial Registration which includes everything except it does NOT include: Workshops 1, 2, & 3.  It also does NOT include the Box Lunch on Saturday.**  It is at a cost of $175.00   We had some requests from some members of the Santa Community who had a spouse and others who just wanted to attend “some” of the venues offered with Full Registration. 
Once you are registered with a deposit, you may add optional activities or upgrade a partial registration to a full registration at any time before February 15th. Event Store page:
ALL pages can easily be accessed through the TAB MENU at the top of each page on the Left hand side.  
There are currently 12 TABS in the TAB MENU to click on for detailed information !!
 Santa Family Reunion website will remain OPEN for registrations to attend, be a vendor, and receive sign ups for the Talent Show during “Santa Season”.  Sherri and myself (Debra Ann) will be available for questions or concerns throughout the holiday season as we are mainly Mrs. Claus “behind the scenes” !!    The website pages continue to be updated, so PLEASE take some time and check it out at your convenience before you get too busy. 
We have a fantastic team committee in place with excellent experience in putting on a successful convention.  Please take a look at our Team Members page as well !!  We are really looking forward to seeing you in March at the Santa Family Reunion in Gatlinburg, TN.  We want to remind you to sign up as soon as possible as we will be limiting registrations to 350.  We thank those who already have done so and look forward to receiving new registrations as well !
Sherri Heath, Team Leader
Debra Ann Gabrelcik, Team Leader


September 2, 2016

Happy Labor Day Weekend to Everyone ! 

Santa Family Reunion Team Members are continuing to get things in place for vendors and attendees of the convention March 17-20th of 2017.

We appreciate your patience as we continue to update our website with helpful information to attend this wonderful family convention in Gatlinburg, TN.

Changes have been made to try and simplify yet include all needed forms and information for you!  We hope you like the changes !!

  • Please check out the HOME PAGE: for all that is included in your registration package as well as optional events. On top headers of every page you will see a bright yellow highlight on the Left Side to REGISTER HERE and a bright green highlight on the Right Hand side for NEW LODGING INFORMATION    The Convention Center has put together a list of hotels that responded to our request for hotel stays in Gatlinburg during the Santa Family Reunion convention.   Be sure to hit back arrow on web browser to go back to Santa Family Reunion Website after visiting the lodging info.  (If you click X on Right hand corner, you will get booted off web page and need to start over.

  • On the REGISTRATION PAGE: is also information of what is included in registration package and option choices.  Click on the to pre-registration click here at the bottom of the registration page.  Once you fill in and submit your registration, you will be directed to the Event Store where you can add your choices to the cart to purchase and pay.
  • You can now find out more about the TALENT SHOW AND submit your application to be in it !

  • You can also view the FASHION SHOW page and find out about this exciting part of our convention AND submit your application to be a part of the event as well !!

We still have more to add to website, next up will be Parade Page and Silent Auction page.  We will let you know when we have those pages up mid September with another newsletter !!!  

Thanks and have a great & safe Labor Day weekend!!

Debra Ann Gabrelcik, Team Leader
Sherri Heath, Team Leader


August 29, 2016

We have been very busy “behind the scenes” working on several projects for the Santa Family Reunion in 2017 !

We would like to give you an update on three important aspects of the Santa Family Reunion today!!  

First:   Registration is up and ready for you on our website:    Please find the 3 basic steps below to take to get your registration completed by making a full payment or partial deposit.   All payments are securely processed through PayPal.  You do not need to have a PayPal account to make payment.  You will also be able to pay by check or money order by clicking that option and finishing the registration.  PLEASE NOTE:  We will be ending registrations when we reach 350 attendees or on February 15, 2017 which ever happens first.  If you want to attend, please register as soon as possible.   A payment is needed to hold your registration.

1)   Go to the Santa Family Reunion website, on the left side is a box of listings, the first is HOME, the next is REGISTRATION INFO – that is the one you want. Click on it, when the page comes up scroll down until you see the words TO PRE-REGISTER PLEASE CLICK HERE – click on them. When the page comes up note please scroll down – keep scrolling until you see the actual form.

2)   Fill it out carefully, click on the word SUBMIT.  You will be redirected to the Event Store Page and a note will pop up stating “Thank you for Pre-Registering for Santa Family Reunion 2017!!!  You are now on our EVENT Store Page.  Please scroll down to add and pay for your Registration and Event Options. Thank you!!!”

3)   Just scroll down the page and choose your Registration and Event Options. When you are ready click on the Checkout button.  You may then choose either PayPal or Check as your method of payment.  PayPal will let you use any credit card to pay, you do not have to have a PayPal account.   Clicking Check allows you to mail a check or money order to Santa Family Reunion LLC.   Once done you will receive an email telling you “We have received your Santa Family Reunion LLC order! Thank you for your purchase.” That’s all there is to it.

Second: The Team Committee page is up so you can see the great experienced team we have lined up to make this Santa Family Reunion a fun and memorable gathering with family and friends !     If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Sherri at  or Debra Ann at    

Third: The Talent Show page is also up and ready for early registration to perform in the Talent Show which will be on Sunday evening during the banquet dinner.  This will be a wonderful evening of entertainment.  We know we have some very talented members in the Santa Community.    Joe Barney has graciously accepted to once again be the Master of Ceremonies for this event and you can expect the unexpected !!   

Please continue to check back on the website for agenda changes as well !!  The most up to date information will always be placed on the website first !!  Stay tuned for more newsletter up dates to follow!!

Thank You,

Debra Ann Gabrelcik, Team Leader
Sherri Heath, Team Leader


August 3rd 2016


We are so excited to finally get the Santa Family Reunion website up and ready for registration !
We are sorry it took so long, but the saying “All Good Things Take Time” really does apply to us!!

There are so many variables that fit into the equation of planning a successful convention it can be overwhelming.   The largest hurdle is to make sure all costs are figured into the registration price.  This really is what took the most time.  We wanted to keep registration prices the lowest possible but be absolutely sure all expenses will be paid of course.

Thank you all for your patience !!

We have some new fun things planned for this Santa Family Reunion that we know you all will enjoy. 
Its fun to think outside the box and experience new things!!
We will be keeping you updated, of course, as things continue to fall into place.
We will be making announcements through newsletters as well as on Facebook:
  and our event agenda website page updates.

We encourage you to book registrations early as we are only 7 ½ months out from the convention.  To secure your spot, we need a payment of ½ of registration cost.  This requires you to submit a registration form and we will be contacting you for payment information. 

We have a wonderful experienced team committee in place and will be introducing them soon on our website and in future newsletters.  We are so grateful to have a skilled team in place that know and love the city of Gatlinburg as much we all do! 
There is something magical about this city at the foot of the Great Smoky Mountains.  It truly is like a second home that keeps calling us back to join together for a Santa Family Reunion.  There is a special bond that forms among us in this delightful quaint city.  We welcome new attendees for the experience and treasure our repeat attendees that have become a part of this wonderful Santa Family we cherish !

Please be aware that both Sherri Heath and myself (Debra Ann) both work and run our own family businesses. We understand the need to be available to answer your questions and will do our very best to respond in a timely fashion.  You can also book accommodations on your own to hotels listed on our website or elsewhere.  We know many will be using their own timeshares or have different hotel favorites.  
We just want to remind everyone, it will be
Spring Break in Gatlinburg and hotels will book up fast !!!

From your Team Leaders:

Debra Ann Gabrelcik
Sherri Heath