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Unknown man shares gift of Christmas with Eastern Idaho

An unknown man is spreading the Christmas spirit across the area, with the help of elves he has never met.

Using the power of social media, the man known by his elves only as “Clandestine Kringle” is bringing a smile to dozens of families.

“My daughter was an elf, I was an elf. My husband played Santa and we did deliveries,” said Kelly Smith, one of Santa’s elves.

Clandestine Kringle takes the needs of those down on their luck and shares their stories with his elves on Facebook.

“It all goes through this Clandestine Kringle. No one knows who he is,” Kelly said. “He is the master of everything. I do not know when he sleeps.”

The elves are quick to jump into action, adopting a family and making Christmas happen.

“You experience every emotion from happiness to sadness to humility. It is just overwhelming but it is beautiful,” said another elf, Shannon Dooley.

For the elves, the beauty of giving goes beyond just the smiles brought to the faces of those they visit.

“The reason this whole thing works is because of his anonymity,” Dooley said. “These families have a safe place to go and tell their stories and their struggles, and we feel that if it gets out who he is, then some of these families who are in desperate need of help won’t be as apt to reach out to him. So we just kind of encourage everyone to remember he is the Spirit of Christmas and beyond that it doesn’t matter.”

The elves said that in addition to individuals, businesses are getting on board and adopting families in need.

The grass-roots movement started last year when Clandestine Kringle created the Facebook page, and added random strangers asking them to provide gifts to families in need. This year, the elves added more people.

Clandestine Kringle and his elves don’t just deliver gifts. They will go caroling to brighten the day of those who are just having a bad one.

There is no age limit. This year, they provided an elderly man without electricity with a heater and blankets.

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