Mary Trent's three-year-old son was mocked by Santa at the Lowe's Christmas Market in Toronto.
Credits: Facebook picture/Handout/QMI Agency
TORONTO -- A wise-cracking bad Santa is now unemployed after the jolly old elf insulted a three-year-old boy Wednesday about his plaid coat and Leafs tuque.
Mary Trent said she was shocked by the behaviour of the Lowe's Toronto Christmas Market's Santa Claus in the Distillery District as her son, who was first in line to visit him, approached him. After Santa arrived a half-hour late, he proceeded to insult the boy's red plaid coat.
"The first thing he tells my son is, 'Oh, you look like Paul Bunyan'," she said. "Really? Is that appropriate?"
"Then he said, 'Oh, you're wearing a Toronto Maple Leafs tuque; you shouldn't be wearing that, they suck.'
"At that point, I took my son and told him we should go, Santa isn't being very good today."
Trent said her son was inconsolable and cried all the way home to Mississauga, Ont.
"He wanted to know who Paul Bunyan was? He wanted to know why Santa said the Toronto Maple Leafs suck?" Trent said Thursday. "I told him Santa was having a bad day. I can't really tell him Santa's a jerk."
Trent said her son loves Santa Claus and he's been visiting him at various appearances around the city this holiday season. But his behaviour at the festival was upsetting so she posted her concerns on the festival's Facebook page, she said.
"He was so out of character and so inappropriate," Trent said. "My son was very, very upset about it."
Trent's post prompted an online apology from the organizers on Facebook Thursday. Mathew Rosenblatt, creator of the European-style event, confirmed to QMI Agency that Saint Nick has been fired.
"The person that had spoken those words is no longer at the Toronto Christmas Market and will not be there in the future," Rosenblatt said.
The comments were "entirely unacceptable" and neither children or adults should be spoken to in that manner. More than 225,000 people visited the festival last year, but even one negative incident is too many, he said.
"It was very upsetting to us," Rosenblatt said. "It was upsetting to all of the people who work so hard to deliver a truly magical experience for our visitors."
The company has offered to bring the family back for another visit. Trent said she was happy organizers had apologized.
"I'm just don't want other kids to have to go through this," she said.