The spirit of Santa Claus is alive and well in Orange County and lives deep within the heart of a Bridge City man.

Don Breaux, 56, and his wife, Angie, are the faces of Christmas for parades, parties and various events as they portray Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Don Breaux had big shoes to fill when he became Santa about five years ago. He took over the “family business” after his father, Leroy, retired as Santa.

When not working as Santa, Breaux works at a local plant as a shift worker.

Don Breaux smiles and, with a twinkle in his eye, he remembers a particular Santa moment dear to his heart. A small boy was sitting on his knee when he asked where Santa’s reindeer were located. Santa quickly replied, on the roof top of course. The boy  rolled his eyes up toward the ceiling and sat quietly as he strained to hear their hooves tapping on the roof. This was truly a magical moment for Breaux.

As most know, nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world. You just have to believe, wrote Francis Pharcellus Church wrote in 1897 for the New York Sun to 8-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon.

Sometimes it is the simple moments which makes Breaux’s day when he appears as Santa.  Children will say with excitement, “He looked at me! “ It is their sheer joy with makes his efforts all worth while.

During his visits with the children, many think, they list the many types of dolls, gadgets or latest trend of toys that they want to see under the tree on Christmas morning. However, this is not true. The most requested item from children for Christmas is vehicles. Not the toys, but real cars and trucks.

Even Breaux knows Santa can’t do his job without elves and Mrs. Claus. His favorite hardworking elf is Kim Thibodeaux who pulls his sleigh.

“I can’t do Santa Claus without Mrs. Claus,” Breaux added. “Behind every Santa Claus there is a Mrs. Claus.”

The next time someone questions whether Santa Claus exists, they many want to consider what Church once wrote more than 100 years ago, “So, yes, dear people, there is a Santa Claus. Church wrote, “ He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus.”

Santa and Mrs. Claus appear in the Bridge City parade. The couple appears at local parties, schools and various events.