COLORADO SPRINGS – Art and Gwen Jenks have gathered anything and everything Mr.
and Mrs. Santa Claus for 40 years. Now their collection is taking over their
No Santa stands alone in the Jenks house.
Theres no mister in here without a missus, said Gwen.
She won the first set at a company Christmas party in 1967. Salt and pepper
shakers in the shape of the Clauses.
I dont know why, I just thought they were cute, she said.
Forty years and more than 700 Clauses later, she is running out of room in her
house. She has figurines, stuffed dolls, ornaments and paintings. They sit on
tables, lay on the floor, hang from the Christmas tree and adorn every crevice
of her home.
It doesnt seem to stop, Gwen said, Its contagious.
About a dozen family members arrive Thanksgiving weekend. Gwen passes out photos
of the last years display and her family goes to work in each room of the
house, unpacking each Mr. and Mrs. Claus and putting them in their proper
Gwen gets plenty of help from her own other half, Art, her husband of 47 years.
Well, thats what its all about, Art said, Were a family.
Hes watched his house slowly be taken over by the First Family of holidays for
decades. But he still has plenty of Christmas cheer.
I cant hate this, he said. How can you hate Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus?
Art has his own fun with his wifes collection. He decided a while back, that
Mrs. Santa Claus deserved her own first name.
He heard Jessica in one Christmas movie and it stuck.
Santa and Jessica, he proclaimed with a sly grin.
It has a certain ring to it. Kind of like Art and Gwen.
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