The Tannenbaum Trials are the culmination of the training for all elves enrolled in Prep and Landing at Kringle Academy. The Trials are timed and monitored closely to determine which of the candidates has the “right stuff” to enter the elite Prep and Landing Corps. Taking place within a small town constructed at the North Pole exclusively for the Trials, the tests consist of 6 segments:
The Elf Hat Parachute Trial – Candidates jump from a towering platform and use their Elf Hat Parachutes to skillfully avoid obstacles such as electrical wires and television antennas (although in the most recent Trials these have been replaced with satellite dishes). The would-be Prep and Landers also use blasts of smoke and hot air from chimneys to maneuver themselves onto targeted rooftops.
The Grapple Hook Glacier Wall Trial – Here their ability to handle the Candy Cane Grappling Hook is ascertained on a vertical edifice studded with outcroppings and platforms. Can they make it to the top of the wall in the time allotted? Many have tried, but only those with steady hands and nerves of steel succeed.
The Site Survey and Sparkle Trial – The candidates now are tested on their aptitude with the Night Vision Goggles, Gingerbread Man (GBM) and Sparkle Ornaments. Within the darkened interior of a simulated home, can they ascertain the actual “creatures stirring” from the false targets and dispense the right amount of sparkle to render them fast asleep?
The Tree Trimming Trial – Armed with the Snowflake Buzzsaw, the candidate faces a challenging assortment of presents and trees to trim. Branches must be cut precisely to allow the gifts to fit under the tree; no under or over-trimming is permitted in this test of fast reflexes and good judgment.
The Rooftop Ski Jump Trial – Snow-covered roofs are where the action is on Christmas Eve, and this Trial puts the elves on a slalom course across the roofs of the small town. Dashing through the snow, they face dangerous encounters with chimneys, trees and those pesky television antennas in a race to demonstrate they have what it takes.
The Advanced Roof Preparation and Landing Trial – This is it…the Big One for those who make it past the previous five Trials. Using the handheld Christmas Tree wands and the Snowman Landing Lights, the hopeful elves are expected to guide Santa’s sleigh (or at least a reasonable facsimile thereof) in for a perfect landing. This is Jingle Time…will it be “Mission Accomplished” or “Figgy Pudding”?