The Elf on the Shelf — based here in Atlanta — and rooted in a family tradition back going back to the 1970s, has sold a whopping 7 million books (and elves) since its 2005 release.
Some think the elf is overly commercial and creepy with his ever-present stare, while others adore the cute, grinning guy and have happily made the elf part of their annual holiday traditions.
Elf on the Shelf now has a pet, and yes, of course it’s a reindeer.
Chanda Bell, her sister Christa Pitts, and their mother Carol Aebersold turned their Powder Springs family ritual into an Elf on the Shelf empire. With clothing and goggles (for the elves) and a birthday countdown (for the child), it was just a matter of time before this family of products expanded to include a furry friend. It’s called, “Elf Pets: A Reindeer Tradition.” It includes a storybook and reindeer (each reindeer wears a heart charm necklace), and retails for $19.95.
The AJC recently interviewed Bell, author of “Elf Pets: A Reindeer Tradition.”
Q: How would you sum up the Elf Pets: A reindeer tradition:
A: (It’s) a family tradition in a box that comes with a real reindeer from the north pole and a Christmas book. The real purpose of Elf Pets: A reindeer tradition is to help Santa’s sleigh fly on Christmas Eve and how kids can be part of it. It’s really about building up the Christmas spirit so Santa can fly.
Q: Why not just keep it at Elf on a Shelf. Isn’t there the danger this might be overdoing it or taking away from the Elf on the Shelf?
A: Both traditions stand alone and they are different, separate things. The elf is going to report back to Santa and interact with your family. The reindeer’s job is to build up Christmas spirit which is made up of faith, hope and love.
Chanda Bell has the following book reading schedule. It’s free and open to the public.
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2014
The Elf on the Shelf’s Elf Pets: A Reindeer Tradition Launch Event
When: Sunday, November 16
Times: 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.; and also 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: Graystone Church; 1551 Ozora Rd, Loganville, GA 30052
What: The event is free and open to the public
· Location: Graystone Chruch; 1551 Ozora Rd, Loganville, GA 30052