Press Kit Author: Grover C. Gouker
The Santamental Family Gift Pack NT A W T ’ I DON OAP! NO S
A gift for the whole family!
The est h S ort r t t Le e Santa ot! Ever G
Santame nta Journeyl For the Young
I Don’t Want NO Soap! For the Young at Heart My
Two books your family will love!
A Genu Santa’s 5 ine “Children 8-year ’s Ministr y”
. Gouker The Rea l Corres ponding Santa C laus
Dear Editors, As you search for truly unique and interesting gift suggestions, we present an extraordinary two-book set by Grover C. Gouker, whose Letters to Santa project was featured on the ABC News program, Nightline. Drawing on nearly six decades as an Official Corresponding Santa Claus, the nationally known public speaker, motivator and humorist has written a children’s book and a book for adults, which together create one of the most meaningful and memorable Christmas gifts of the year. For the young - Based on a real letter from a young boy named Scott, children will be delighted by I Don’t Want No Soap, The Shortest Letter Santa Ever Got! In this beautifully illustrated book, excitement at the North Pole builds as Santa’s helpers eagerly anticipate the reading of the first letter of the Christmas season. For the young at heart - My Santamental Journey written by a real corresponding Santa Claus, will inspire readers with an in-depth look into Mr. Gouker’s 58-year Letters to Santa project, which continues to this day. About the Letters to Santa project - The project began 58 years ago, when Mr. Gouker was a young U.S. Postal Service worker in Hanover, Pa. Working long hours during the busy Christmas season, he was heartbroken when he discovered that children’s letters to Santa were being thrown into the wastebasket. With the permission of the postmaster, he began to answer them. He plans to continue his correspondence for as long as he is able. Thank you for your consideration. Sharon K. Martin,
Marketing Coordinator for Grover C. Gouker
Product samples and high-resolution images are available for media use. To place a request, please contact Sharon Martin at 215-534-6418 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Author
About the Author
Grover C. Gouker is a semi-retired, nationally known Public Speaker, Motivator, and Humorist. He has taught courses in Human Relations and People Skills, Sales, and Public Speaking. Mr. Gouker also has conducted thousands of workshops, seminars and presentations for businesses, organizations, civic groups, conventions, hospitals and educational groups. He has spoken to more than 20,000 audiences. Often referred to as the “Williams Jennings Bryan of the Jaycees,” Mr. Gouker is a former President of the Hanover Jaycees, former State President of the Pennsylvania Jaycees and former Vice-President of the U.S. Jaycees. He was the Founder of the Hanover Area YMCA and Founder of the Hanover Friends of the Library. Mr. Gouker was the Charter President of the Pennsylvania JCI Senators. He is a former Chapter Chairman of the American Red Cross and former Founder and Commander of the AMVETS in his hometown of Hanover, Pennsylvania. Mr. Gouker was elected to the World President’s Committee on Community Development–Junior Chamber International. The Korean Ambassador cited him for special recognition for the State Chairmanship of Korean War Orphans. He was inducted into the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce Leadership Hall of Fame in 2004 and was awarded the prestigious Jefferson Award in 2005 for community service. His most treasured avocation is his Letters to Santa project, which has entitled him to the name of Official Corresponding Santa Claus. Mr. Gouker and his 58-year project were featured on ABC News Nightline with Ted Koppel on Christmas Eve in 2001. The project began after Mr. Gouker accepted a job at the post office in Hanover, Pa., following his return from the service as a young man. While working long hours at Christmastime, he could not help but notice the volume of letters addressed to Santa Claus. Unfortunately, these letters were thrown into the wastebasket. To Mr. Gouker, that just wasn’t right. These children were pouring out their hearts to the one person they thought could satisfy all of their wishes. It was his belief that someone should be answering those letters. And so, with the permission of the Hanover postmaster, he began doing just that. Answering the children’s letters quickly became a labor of love, which continues to this day. Thus far, Mr. Gouker has answered more than 100,000 letters from children and adults from all 50 states and seven countries. Mr. Gouker had dreamed for years about writing a book about this project because he is so passionate about it. When he was forced to slow down a few years ago, due to a partial loss of sight, he decided to fulfill this dream. Now 86, he recently accomplished that goal – the only one he had ever set and not achieved – and not only did he write one book, he wrote two. Mr. Gouker lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Gloria. He has two daughters, Patti and Peg, and a granddaughter Erin.
Grover C. Gouker
“Children are our most cherished gifts. Pouring our lives into our children will ensure that our world will be a better place to live. As you read Grover Gouker’s books you will see the passion he has for children. The fact that he accomplished his goal to write this book at age 86 is astounding and commendable. I would recommend these books to anyone who values children.” Anne Beiler Founder of Auntie Anne’s Soft Pretzels. Author and Speaker.
Fast Facts About the Author: Nationally known public speaker, motivator and humorist Grover C. Gouker has served as the Official Corresponding Santa Claus for the past 58 years. He began answering children’s letters to Santa during the early years of his career as a postal worker because it broke his heart to see them thrown into the wastebasket. His Letters to Santa project was featured on the ABC News program Nightline on Christmas Eve 2001. Mr. Gouker has answered more than 100,000 letters to Santa from children of all ages. At age 86, he recently published his first children’s book and his first book for adults. Mr. Gouker lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Gloria. He has two daughters, Patti and Peg, and a granddaughter Erin.
About the Children’s Book: I Don’t Want No Soap, The Shortest Letter Santa Ever Got!, is based on a real letter written by a young boy named Scott. Santa and his helpers eagerly await the reading of the first letter of the Christmas season only to find it’s the shortest one Santa has ever received. They’re also surprised to discover that Scott doesn’t like to take baths. However, he just might have a change of heart when he learns how much fun soap and water can be. With the help of colorful illustrations by J. Holly Clarkson, this lively tale is sure to please readers of all ages. About the Book for Adults: My Santamental Journey is an indepth look into Mr. Gouker’s 58-year “children’s ministry.” Readers will laugh, cry and be inspired by real letters from children to Santa and his responses to them. The children’s letters range from laughout-loud funny to warm and touching, including requests for comfort for children who lost a parent on Sept. 11, and other heartbreaking situations. The book also invites readers into the imaginary world of the North Pole created by a man who, despite his age, remains a child at heart. Where to Buy the Books: www.SantaAnswers.com. To be available shortly on various online bookstores. For a list of retail stores, please see www.SantaAnswers.com. Product Samples and Images Available for Media Use - Product samples and high-resolution images are available for media use. To place a request, please contact Sharon Martin at 215-534-6418 or email email@example.com
“Uplifting, heartwarming, and heart-tugging at times, Grover’s stories behind his letters from Santa are just a part of his extraordinary ministry to over 100,000 children, their families and countless others. Let him share his examples of humor and tenderness with you, and you’ll not only believe in Santa Claus...you’ll believe in yourself.” Jill Brown, Television Reporter & Magazine Columnist
Suggested Story Ideas Speaking to Children on Their Level Grover Gouker has been listening to children and answering their letters with great care. He never promises anything, but always tries to offer the child a gift of true understanding. He is quick to relate his life at the North Pole to their lives.
Writing and Publishing in “The Golden Years” After writing more than 100,000 letters to children, Mr. Gouker thought it was time to write a book to the parents. He was then convinced that he should also write a book for the children. Writing books, it’s harder than you think! The True Meaning of Christmas Through his many letters and stories of the North Pole, Mr. Gouker illustrates the real spirit of Christmas by making others happy. After nearly six decades as the Ofﬁcial Corresponding Santa Claus, nationally known public speaker, motivator and humorist Grover C. Gouker has written two books based on his experiences. The author of I Don’t Want No Soap, The Shortest Letter Santa Ever Got! and My Santamental Journey can speak to the following story ideas: After writing replies to children’s letters for nearly 60 years, what keeps you motivated to continue your Letters to Santa project? What does the project mean to you and your family? Was your family on board with this project from the beginning? You have received and responded to more than 100,000 letters to Santa from all 50 states and seven countries. Have you kept all of those letters? How difficult was it to decide which of those to include in your book for adults? What motivated your selections? How much time have you devoted to the Letters to Santa project over the years? How much money has it cost you? Has the amount of time needed to answer the letters increased or decreased over the years? How many letters do you receive each year? Do you answer all of them? You refer to your Letters to Santa project as a “children’s ministry.” What do you mean by that? Is it a religious ministry?
“ I laughed...I cried... I looked at life through the honest, innocent eyes of a child once more. And as a 55-yearold grandpa, I wrote a letter to Santa, for I believe again. I urge you to take the Santamental Journey as well. Great praises for a friend and former mentor.
How did the Letters to Santa project begin? Was it your idea? Does anyone help you with this project?
A book the whole family will enjoy!”
What made you want to write a book about your Letters to Santa project? What did you want people to know about it, and about you? Why did you also decide to write a children’s book?
Tim Barley Sr., Executive Director of Finance & Support Services, LCBC Church
Take a Santamental Journey with a Real Santa Laugh, Cry and be Inspired by a Genuine Santa’s 58-year “Children’s Ministry”