The Santa Claus Detector and other Santa Patents

By Gene Quinn
December 23, 2008

 Santa Claus Detector
US Patent No. 5,523,741
Issued June 4, 1996

This the season to be jolly, so why not search for some patents with the word “Santa” in the title?  This Santa Claus Detector patent is one of my all-time favorites, and one of the more ingenious holiday patents that I have ever seen.  In addition to some very cool patent art, the invention is explained as including a Christmas stocking having illumination means that light up upon the arrival of Santa Claus.  According to the invention, the Christmas stocking has a light source on the exterior of the stocking and a power source with a switching mechanism, which is preferably contained in the stocking itself.  The toe of the stocking has a hole that will allow for a slide pin.  The stocking is hung by the chimney with care, and a decorative pull cord is tied to the ring at the toe of the stocking.  The other end of the decorative pull cord is tied to either another stocking hung opposite or secured to a decoration on the other side of the fire place.  This should then create a scene much like the one pictured below.

So when Santa comes through the chimney he will break the electrical circuit housed in the stocking by pulling the cord.  So when Santa crosses the finish line the stocking will have lights and sounds emanate, thereby announcing the arrival of Santa Claus.

Another fun invention along these lines is US Patent 7,258,592, which relates to a Santa Clause visit kit and which was patented on August 21, 2007.  Thanks to Jake Ward at Antiticpate This! for bringing this patent to my attention.  This patent covers a kit for creating an illusion that suggests a Santa Claus visit has occurred.

Other recent “Santa patents” include a couple design patents.  First, D564,936, issued on March 25, 2008 and covers a Nativity scene decoration including Santa Claus.  Second, D562,714 issued on February 26, 2008 and covers a Santa ornament smoke detector.

So who says patents can’t be fun?  There are patents for all occasions!

Merry Christmas!

The Author

Gene Quinn

Gene Quinn is a Patent Attorney and Editor and President & CEO ofIPWatchdog, Inc.. Gene founded in 1999. Gene is also a principal lecturer in the PLI Patent Bar Review Course and Of Counsel to the law firm of Berenato & White, LLC. Gene’s specialty is in the area of strategic patent consulting, patent application drafting and patent prosecution. He consults with attorneys facing peculiar procedural issues at the Patent Office, advises investors and executives on patent law changes and pending litigation matters, and works with start-up businesses throughout the United States and around the world, primarily dealing with software and computer related innovations. is admitted to practice law in New Hampshire, is a Registered Patent Attorney and is also admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. CLICK HERE to send Gene a message.

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