Home is where the heart is and even though his children’s acting careers take them and his wife to LA often, the bay area has been home for Chadd Thomas for 24 years. And he’s made a name for himself in the community. Thomas and his wife Kristi are local celebrities as hosts of the Magic Morning Show on Magic 94-9 FM. The couple has been working and spending 24 hours a day together for 12 years. And kids Brendan, 13, and Emeline, 7, having spent their fair share of time on the morning show throughout the years, no doubt got the performance bug from mom and dad. So how do they do it all? Read on.
What’s the most rewarding part of being a dad?
Seeing how well my kids behave on set or around other adults is extremely rewarding. They really want to make a good impression and be seen as well-mannered. Also seeing how brave they are to go into an audition or give a performance. I just shake my head and wonder how I am so lucky.
What is your favorite thing to do with your kids?
Hands down, going to Disney World! We love to camp and often do so at Fort Wilderness — lots of s’mores, campfires and rides on Space Mountain!
What is the most challenging part of fatherhood?
From the beginning, we have raised our kids to have a voice, to speak out, to ask questions and to draw conclusions, which is good for their mental growth but sometimes challenging when you just want them to say “OK!”
What role model in your life influenced the kind of father you are?
Simple – my dad. And I think most guys would probably say this. Growing up, my dad was a mail carrier who walked miles and miles every day. Looking back, I realize how exhausted he must have been every day yet he always took the time to play catch, coach my little league team or teach me to fix or build something.
As a father, how do you view your responsibilities?
Here’s where I have to give so many props to my wife Kristi. She’s the one that accompanies our kids whenever they have auditions in L.A. While there, she not only gets up at 1 a.m. Pacific time to do our morning radio show, but shuffles the kids to auditions, takes them to acting classes and helps with their homeschooling. Meanwhile I stay here in Tampa and look after the house and the dog. I know that’s important, but what she does is amazing!
It is often difficult to balance a career with spending time with your family. How do you deal with this and make time for them?
I think this is where getting up at 3 a.m. for my job is both a blessing and a curse. (Suffice to say that after 12 years, we still have to set three alarm clocks every morning!) But we are so fortunate to be home most of the day to help our son with his homeschooling or pick up our daughter at the bus stop then kick the soccer ball around or go for a swim.
What is something people don’t know about you?
I was once a finalist to be a Power Ranger on TV. There you go.
What makes you happy?
The Magic Kingdom, ’80’s music and Nutella! In fact, eating Nutella while trying to sing Depeche Mode while preparing to board Haunted Mansion – doesn’t get any better than that!
Where is your favorite place to go in Tampa?
There’s nothing quite like wandering around Ikea for a couple of hours with the family — complete with a round of Swedish Meatballs — except maybe a date night with Kristi at Texas de Brazil or a Moe’s Monday. I guess I like to eat.