After multiple sightings of the elusive Saint Norm were confirmed, UNC Charlotte officially announced the 66th annual 49 Days of Christmas. First held in 1949, the 49 Days of Christmas is a treasured tradition at UNCC where students and faculty alike get to celebrate the long holiday that begins near the end of November and ends in the beginning of January.
In its early years, the 49 Days of Christmas was but a simple celebration around Christmas time where students looked forward to Saint Norm (or Niner Claus as he’s sometimes known) visiting dorms and handing out UNCC-themed gifts and memorabilia. Reportedly, the white-bearded man visits areas of campus, begins celebrations, and then vanishes without a trace. Since these early years, the holiday has expanded and transformed into a campus-wide festival that everyone can enjoy.
Sandra Lewis, a professor and former student of UNCC, said that the 49 Days of Christmas are the best part about the school for her. “What other school celebrated Christmas for 49 days? If you can find one, let me know.”
The 49 Days of Christmas not only bring happiness and cheer to the campus, but drains all motivation to do school work. Many students attribute their sudden apathy near the end of the fall semester to this holiday
Reagan Murphy, a sophomore, said while she looks forward to the holiday this year she’s also a bit nervous. “Last year I ended up failing two classes last year because I just couldn’t find motivation to do my final projects,” she said. “I’m not blaming Saint Norm or anything, but the night before my big final, he came to my dorm and threw a big Christmas party for the whole hall. I didn’t get to bed until 5 in the morning.”
And it’s not just students either. Dr. Lewis also mentioned how she had to cancel a week of class due to Saint Norm hosting a big party within her department. “The guy can really throw a party,” she said. “It’s honestly unreal.”
Despite the distraction that the 49 Days can pose to those on campus, the holiday shows no signs of being stopped anytime soon. Chancellor Philip Dubois recently released a statement saying, “While the 49 Days of Christmas can be a trying time for those of us trying to study or get work done, the fact of the matter is it’s completely out of my control. Saint Norm begins and ends the holiday, and until he is satisfied we must all do our best to embrace the holiday cheer.”