As usual, Santa was very busy this year making his rounds throughout Northwest Arkansas. However, his first visit was on November 19th at the annual Downtown Bentonville, Inc.’s “Lighting of the Square” event proudly sponsored by First National Bank of NWA. He was the highlight of the evening, other than the lights themselves of course, with the line of children and parents anxiously awaiting their turn to see him wrapping around the square.

FNBNWA is lucky to have etched a spot in Santa’s incredibly busy schedule this Holiday Season. Especially, this particular Santa. There is no doubt in my mind that he is, in fact, the REAL Santa. Not only does he look the part, but he talks the talk and walks the walk. His eyes twinkle, his cheeks are rosy… he is the full package! But our Santa also gives back in a very special way that makes him unique to all other “Santas” out there.

Three years ago, upon collecting the money from serving as the Jolly Ole’ Elf at various events and venues around NWA, “Santa” decided to donate all of his earnings to the children at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. This year, his donation of over $1000 will go to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to help out a special young man. “I have a Santa child at St. Jude that is in a bad way, but they are taking VERY good care of him. Therefore, I wanted my money to go St. Jude this year.”

While I would like to give “Santa” the recognition he deserves and call him by his real name, he wishes to remain anonymous. However, you can check him out on Facebook at Arkansas Santa or catch him in 2017 at the FNBNWA booth at the DBI, Inc. Lighting of the Square!

We, here at First National Bank of NWA, hope your Christmas was Merry and Bright, and look forward to serving you in the New Year!

Brent Leas is Vice President – Community Banker for First National Bank of NWA. Brent is the Retail Team Leader at our Bentonville branch. He has banking, investment services and business development experience, including asset management, financial consulting and commercial insurance. Brent began his banking career 21 years ago, here in Northwest Arkansas. Brent also serves on the Bentonville Public Schools Board of Education as an elected member.