To repair his tarnished image, a jaded rock star publicly decides to fulfill a child's "Dear Santa" Christmas wish. After reluctantly agreeing to spend the holidays in a small town and ...
- Kristoffer Tabori
It's a few weeks before Christmas. Seven months ago, twenty-six year old Kelly Harding moved from New York City back to her small rural hometown of Cedar Grove, Illinois when the publishing house where she worked as a children's book jacket writer folded. She has moved back into her mother and father's house - they a fledgling realtor and the town minister respectively - into her old bedroom, which looks exactly the same as it did when she first moved out of the house at age eighteen, complete with a life sized poster of pop idol Dax hanging on the wall. Kelly tells herself this move is only temporary, but she is having trouble trying to figure out what to do with her life, although her mother Lynne wouldn't mind if Kelly stayed permanently. Without telling her, Kelly's adoptive twelve year old brother Tim Harding, using her name, has entered a "make a wish" contest being held by Dax, who will fulfill the wish of the randomly drawn winner. Tim's wish is for Dax to come to Cedar Grove Christmas week culminating in him performing at the town's annual Christmas concert. Tim, who figures that the wish would be more palatable coming from a true fan - although in Kelly's case, a true past fan when she was a teenager - solely wants Dax's presence so that they can raise enough money to restart the town's boy's club, which shut down due to lack of funds. Tim's entry is chosen, something else he fails to tell Kelly or anyone else, that is until Dax shows up in Cedar Grove. What Tim doesn't know is that Dax's manager, Jason Chandler, cooked up this scheme solely as a means to boost Dax's sagging popularity, that decline which took a nosedive on Thanksgiving when he was caught on camera in a public drunken incident behind the wheel. In reality, Dax fights this wish granting all the way to Cedar Grove. He also hates his life as the spoiled, pampered rock star, it is what it is largely out of inertia. As such, he just lets his vacuous "girlfriend" Chelsea hang around despite not really even liking her. That inertia has also led to him not having written a song in four years as the reason he entered the music business has been taken over by the trappings. With no hotel in Cedar Grove open during the off season, Dax is forced to live in the Harding family home under Reverend Harding's house rules: no smoking, no drinking, curfew and most importantly no touching his daughter. If Dax makes it through the week, he will either get the better of Cedar Grove, or the wholesome small town life will get the better of him. What happens is also affected by Jason and Chelsea, who have their own wants for Dax over the Christmas season.