Yes, Virginia, There is a Christmas Special for You


In 1897, a young girl named Virginia O’Hanlon, at the behest of this father, wrote a letter to the New York Sun. Her letter read, “Dear Editor: I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says ‘If you see it in The Sun it’s so.’ Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?” Francis Pharcellus Church, writing in an editorial, famously replied, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” Thus one of the most enduring parts of Christmas tradition was born.

An animated Christmas special based on Virginia’s story was produced in 1974 and it went on to win a primetime Emmy award. This year, another animated version premiered on CBS, 8 p.m. on December 11. It featured the voice talents of How I Met Your Mother lead Neil Patrick Harris and Ghost Whisperer star Jennifer Love Hewitt. Sponsored by Macy’s, the television special is in line with the department store’s “Believe” drive to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation. For every letter brought to a “Believe Station” in Macy’s stores, $1 will be donated by Macy’s to the wish-granting organization.