John Sullivan

Two local Santa Claus portrayers have joined together and formed a new Illinois entertainment company which serendipitously has been named Santa Claus, Inc. One of the Santas is John Sullivan, a twenty five year veteran of entertaining area families. The other is Mark Wedow, a multi-talented performer who not only plays Santa, but has been a Chicagoland character actor, artist, entertainer, and musician for over three decades. Their company’s first projects will be North Pole trolley tours in Naperville and Evanston starting in late November through December. Why trolley tours? According to Sullivan, who publishes the web directory Santa in Chicago featuring about twenty-five hundred Santa happenings in the Chicago metropolitan area, the page which lists the train and trolley car events is the most popular on his website. Because of their passion for all things Christmas, it was a no-brainer for the partners to offer North Pole adventures, loosely based on the Polar Express book by Chris Van Allsburg. The official name for their holiday events is “Santa’s Magical Trolley Express”. Sullivan says they are working on a number of things that will make these programs as realistic as possible. For example, the children will be traveling to a mythical North Pole—when they arrive, they will believe they have found Santa at his workshop. The odyssey begins when the little ones board the trolley. They will be greeted by Mrs. Claus and the conductor, professional performers who know how to entertain kids, and build excitement as they journey north on their polar trek. Upon arrival at Santa’s North Pole abode—created by a top set designer—they will visit with the big guy, get a picture and let St. Nick know what they hope to find under the tree. Next comes cookies and cocoa with Mrs. Claus, some exciting Yuletide games, and a very special surprise. For additional information on Santa’s Magical Trolley Express events go to