Showing posts with label SantaCon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SantaCon. Show all posts

Thursday, December 8, 2022

SantaCon 2022 route revealed

SantaCon is back for in-person binging and bar crawling this Saturday (Dec. 10). 

Organizers have released the official route, which is not too different from last year's edition. 

The official festivities begin at 10 a.m. on 40th Street and Broadway. Per the SC website: "Santa is Painting the town Red We will be dancing in the streets and Santa will unleash a holiday celebration NYC has never imagined possible!" 

A $15 "donation" gets your Santa Badge and access to 60-plus participating bars, mainly in Midtown West and East. 

This year, eight of the bars are in the East Village: 

• Amsterdam Billiards & Bar, 110 E. 11th St. at Fourth Avenue 

• Bull McCabe's, 29 St. Mark's Place between Second Avenue and Third Avenue 

• Coyote Ugly, 244 E. 14th St. between Second Avenue and Third Avenue 

• Doc Holliday's, 141 Avenue A at Ninth Street 

• The Grayson, 16 First Ave. between First Street and Second Street 

• Horseshoe Bar/7B, 108 Avenue B at Seventh Street 

• The Phoenix, 447 E. 13th St.  between Avenue A and First Avenue 

• Solas, 232 E. Ninth St. between Second Avenue and Third Avenue 

However, as we've seen in previous Cons, bars not on the official list are often all too happy to participate, including the 13th Step on Second Avenue. 

Shiny Galeani, an NYC SantaCon organizer, provided some damage control in a recent interview with Gothamist. 
"Every year we get a lot of press that shines a negative light on SantaCon. I understand and certainly it'll get more clicks." But, she said, some of the coverage felt a little unfair, focused on specific incidents from a decade ago. 

"People have all kinds of preconceived notions about what we are and why we do it," Galeani said. "A lot of it stems from bad press that we got a long time ago, and that’s a bummer." 
And don't call it a pub crawl! 
"It's definitely not a pub crawl because there is no order and you don't have to drink." Many bars, Galeani said, will serve mocktails. The biggest misunderstanding, of course — the one that goes beyond definitions and logistics — is that folks just don't get SantaCon. 

SantaCon is about "community and absurdity and the holiday spirit," said Galeani. She marveled at its ability to take over a place as big as New York City with sheer silliness. It is open to everyone.

Apparently, the MTA didn't get the "it's not a pub crawl" memo. The MTA is banning booze on LIRR and Metro-North Trains and stations for 32 Hours for SantaCon (from 4 a.m. Saturday to noon Sunday). 

Monday, October 31, 2022

SantaCon 2022 is now on the clock

Something truly terrifying for your Halloween: SantaCon NYC 2022 is on the clock

SantaCon returns for in-person binging and bar crawling on Saturday, Dec. 10. 

No word yet on the route, participating bars, etc. — all that will arrive in the days leading up to Dec. 10. So you have time to make plans to be far, far away. 

H/T Steven!

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Reports: Did SantaCon contribute to NYC's current COVID-19 surge?

Photo on Dec. 11 along Avenue A by Derek Berg

In recent days, several published reports have suggested that SantaCon, held on Dec. 11 in bars and venues in parts of Midtown and in the East Village, played a role in the current surge of positive COVID-19 cases in Manhattan. (It's also a topic brought up in the EVG comments.)

City Councilmember Mark Levine, chair of the Health Committee and Manhattan Borough president-elect, helped bolster this case when he tweeted Saturday about the high numbers in the city: "And yes SantaCon may partly be to blame."
In a story published Sunday, The Daily Mail noted, "The SantaCon surge: Covid cases in Manhattan QUADRUPLE in the six days since notorious costumed bar crawl." The article builds its case on the Levine tweet and other social media posts where people said they tested positive after attending the annual bar crawl that was postponed in 2020.

Here's more from The Cut at New York magazine from Thursday:
Last year, SantaCon was thankfully canceled due to the pandemic. This year, there's still a pandemic — not to mention a highly contagious variant spreading — but like many other holiday gatherings that now seem ill-advised, it happened anyway despite fears it had all the makings of a super-spreader event. And now, surprise: #santacon TikTok is flooded with people who attended and have since tested positive for COVID-19.

The Cut assembled a collection of the SantaCon-COVID clips on TikTok.  

Meanwhile, Business Insider also pointed the finger at SantaCon for this current uptick in a piece titled "The SantaCon surge has hit NYC" from Saturday.

Per their report:
[S]ince last weekend — which saw the return of SantaCon, NYC's biggest event of debauchery and drunken revelry — many a New Yorker's phones have blown up with texts from friends saying they'd been exposed to Covid. Positivity rates have doubled in the past three days, with cases in the city up more than 40 percent in one day, recording the highest one-day total since January 14. 
Later, the piece backs off a bit from the headline:
To be sure, SantaCon isn't entirely to blame for the Omicron wave. Companies have been holding in-person holiday parties and NYC nightlife has been back to normal for quite some time. Health restrictions, like mask mandates and social distancing, have been increasingly disregarded. 
In a post published yesterday at Bushwick Daily, three residents who tested positive and work at bars-restaurants in the East Village or Lower Manhattan blamed SantaCon for spreading COVID.

East Village bartender Iseult James told the site that "the event might have been a super spreader and is largely to blame for the uptick in positive tests. So now, instead of spending Christmas with her husband's parents in Fort Greene, the couple must stay at home."

As multiple news outlets have already reported, average daily case counts in New York City more than doubled over the week ending Dec. 17, according to the latest data available on the city's health department website. NYC is reporting a seven-day average of more than 7,200 cases per day, up from about 3,200 the week prior, a 127-percent increase.

According to the NYC Health site, neighborhoods including the East Village and Murray Hill, where SantaConners mingled on Dec. 11, have among the highest positivity rates in the five boroughs for the week ending Dec. 17. The citywide positivity rate is at 7.68 percent.
Here are the two zip codes that include parts of the East Village... 10009 had a positivity rate of 9.79 percent while 10003 had a rate of 11.81 percent (click on the image for more detail) ... 
The zip code encompassing Kips Bay/Murray Hill is at 11.14 percent ...
Of course, SantaCon participants or bar employees who have tested positive don't necessarily live in these zip codes. (Also, these zip codes also have high rates of fully vaccinated adults, above the city's 71 percent.)

Meanwhile, Mayor de Blasio addressed the rise in COVID cases during a press conference yesterday.

"It's going to be a very challenging few weeks. But the good news is based on what our healthcare leadership understands, at this moment, we are talking about a matter of weeks," de Blasio said, as CNBC reported.  

The mayor went on to say that New Yorkers infected with omicron are experiencing mild symptoms so far, though many unanswered questions remain about the variant.

"We're going to see a really fast upsurge in cases; we're going to see a lot of New Yorkers affected by omicron," de Blasio said. "So far, thank God based on everything we've seen, the cases are milder than what we've experienced previously." 

Gov. Hochul reemphasized yesterday that there would not be any new shutdowns.

"It's not March of 2020. It's not even December of 2020. Just to keep things in perspective, it is milder than delta," Hochul said of omicron, per NBC 4. "We are avoiding a government shutdown because we now have the tools available to all of us — vaccinations, booster shots, masks — particularly for the variant we're dealing with."

You can find information on vaccines and boosters via the city at this link. Find a city-affiliated testing site here.  

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Weekend's parting shot

As seen Saturday night from 12th Street... "Fuck SantaCon" projected onto the Verizon building on 13th Street and Second Avenue. 

Thanks to Artie Athas for the photo!

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

SantaCon announces 2021 route; East Village in the crosshairs once again

After a year off with the pandemic in 2020, SantaCon returns for in-person binging and bar crawling at the expense of the rest of the city this Saturday. (First reported here.) 

Yesterday, SantaCon organizers unveiled the 2021 route, which starts at 10 a.m. at 40th and Broadway. Per the SantaCon website: "We will be dancing in the streets and will unleash a holiday celebration NYC has never imagined possible!" 

A $13 donation gets your Santa Badge and access to participating bars, mainly in Midtown West and East. Six of the bars are in the East Village: The Grayson, 16 First Ave., Amsterdam Billiards & Bar, 110 E. 11th St., Doc Holliday's, 141 Avenue A, Horseshoe Bar/7B, 108 Avenue B, the Phoenix, 447 E. 13th St., and Solas, 232 E. Ninth St. 

However, as we've seen in previous Cons, bars not on the official list are often all too happy to participate, including the 13th Step.  (The SantaCon website states that participants must have proof of COVID vaccination.)

Meanwhile, ahead of the 2021 bar list, someone launched a Cancel SantaCon petition...
Per the petition: 
SantaCon is the worst day of the year in New York City. Each year thousands of belligerent drunk people in Santa costumes flood New York City streets, leaving behind a trail of fistfights, vomit, urine and garbage. John Oliver did a segment on the event which highlighted the faux-charitable nature of the pub crawl. He stated that each SantaCon participant only raises $1.66 for charity, which is hardly enough to excuse the violent and inappropriate behavior. The evidence is crystal clear: Santacon does more bad than good. 

This year New York City residents have had enough! We are calling for Mayor Bill de Blasio to show leadership and order the cancelation of Santacon. We believe that this is an issue that unites New Yorkers of all races, religions, and political beliefs. 

Please sign this petition so we can end SantaCon in New York City once and for all. 
You can find the petition here

And the petition garnered some support via Twitter...
Oh, and here's the John Oliver segment from December 2019 mentioned in the petition ...


Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Ho, ho, no! SantaCon slated for Dec. 11

Over the Halloween weekend, we spotted this discarded (or lost!) Santa hat on Avenue A. 

We noted this in our Instagram Stories ... wrong holiday, etc. Haha. A few people nervously brought up SantaCon. Haha. As in, That's not happening this year — is it?

As of now, yes. 

According to its website, SantaCon, which Gothamist describes as "the annual debauched meathead magnet bar crawl that floods certain unfortunate neighborhoods with blathering bro-chads in Santa costumes every December," the event is Dec. 11... 
The pandemic sidelined last year's SantaCon. Participating venues are announced shortly before the 'Con... and the East Village always seems to make this Santa's list.

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Oh Santa

1) On 14th Street at First Avenue. The inflatable Santa made a return to the Christmas tree stand. In previous years, the Santa had been on top of a Cousin Eddie-worthy RV

2) Today would have been SantaCon.

Friday, November 27, 2020

There won't be an official SantaCon this year

SantaCon, set to terrorize NYC again on Dec. 12, is officially off, organizers announced on their website this week.

In the usual tone-deaf humor that has been a hallmark of SantaCon through the years, the announcement (screengrab above) reads in part: "All of the reindeer got the 'rona, so the elves have advised Santa to hold off on the in-person merriment."

The announcement also reads "there is no official SantaCon in 2020," leaving open the potential for unofficial Santa pub crawls this holiday season.

In any event, SantaCon organizers offer alternatives to "spread merriment (not infection) this year." Suggestions include donating to Helping Hearts NYC and, more on brand, playing a drinking game to "light up your holiday spirit like Rudolph's suspiciously red nose."

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

A call to cancel SantaCon

Steven spotted this poster this morning on the former Bean space on First Avenue and Ninth Street... a call to cancel SantaCon, which takes place this coming Saturday at unknown locations. (Their party yachts plan sunk.)

The poster ask several questions, including: "Sick of drunken Santas throwing up and urinating everywhere?"

If so, then there is a Cancel SantaCon petition that you can find here.

The posters are from @tglnyc, who brought us the "McTrump Value Meal" yesterday at McDonald's.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Ho, ho, ho now there's a SantaCon lawsuit

[Photo from 2018 by Derek Berg]

There’s no place like a courtroom for the holidays.

A pub crawl promoter, named as Eddie Miller in public documents and published reports, filed suit Friday in a Manhattan Federal Court seeking control over the internet domain and its trademark registration.

Law360 has the details:

Miller's suit targets a business called Participatory Safety Inc., claiming its "SantaCon" mark is invalid and seeking an order that it may not assert control over domain names such as and

"SantaCon is a descriptive, if not generic, term," the suit says. Miller also claims for damages, saying his business interests have been unlawfully disrupted.

According to Miller's suit, the defendant registered the domain name in 2015, then applied for the SantaCon mark the following year, for use at "charitable fundraising" events.

Not long after that, persons unknown to Miller begin telling city pub owners that they were the "official SantaCon," says the suit, which presumably will attempt to name additional defendants.

"Whoever spoke to the bars told them not to do business with plaintiffs," according to the suit. In late 2016, persons unknown to Miller then emailed pubs, falsely calling him an impostor, according to the suit.

That year, a person going by the alias Kristopher Kringle attempted to force bar owners to pay him $400 per bar to allow SantaCon crawlers to enter their establishments, the suit says. That person, the suit says, is part of the defendant company's "smear campaign."

"Defendants' malicious acts have caused and continue to injure plaintiffs' ability to sell tickets to their SantaCon events all over the United States," the complaint says.

The suit also sheds light on the driving forces behind SantaCon, which Ben Yakas at Gothamist describes as the "city's stupidest annual event, a cultural void that provides an excuse for binge drinkers and obnoxious bros to let their alcoholism fly in public, all under the thin veneer of charity."

The Daily News listed the plaintiffs as Miller, Digital Marketing & Events, and Damon's List.

For future reference: The case is Miller et al. v. Participatory Safety Inc. et al., case number 1:19-cv-06994, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Meanwhile, here's the NYC date for SantaCon 2019...

H/T Carol from East 5th Street!

Saturday, December 8, 2018

SantaCon 2018

A few scenes from SantaCon today in the East Village... Derek Berg took these photos...


A reader shared this from Second Avenue at Ninth Street outside the Step (former 13th Step), which, as always, seemed to be the center for SantaCon (even if it wasn't on the list on SantaCon bars) ...

... and EVG reader Sonya shared this from the Santa Shack Shack at the DeathStar...

Updated 12/9

A reader shared this photo from yesterday on Second Avenue and 15th Street ... some Santas in an Uber headed to East Village bars, but not before making a pit stop...

Another sick Santa on Second Avenue near Ninth Street...

[Photo via @mishamc]

There are several reports of fights and assaults on the Citizen app from yesterday, though only one specifically mentioned Santas...

Not sure of the exact location of this street brawl...

Friday, December 7, 2018

ICYMI: Here comes SantaCon

[Image via @SantaCon]

As you likely heard by now, SantaCon 2018 is tomorrow (Saturday).

The woo-hooery starts tomorrow (still Saturday) at 10 a.m. at Plaza 33, 33rd Street and Seventh Avenue.

From there, the Santas will fan out across Midtown, Murray Hell, Midtown East, et al. Once again, the East Village will serve as a host planet for the harvesting. There are 15-plus participating bars — list here. (The 13th Step/The Step isn't on the list, though they usually have one of the longest lines of people in Santa hats.)

Solas on Ninth Street between Second Avenue and Third Avenue and The VNYL on Third Avenue between 12th Street and 13th Street are designated "Special Santa Venues," which require a $12 donation. As Gothamist noted, "they are larger and offer additional hellish delights such as undoubtedly terrible DJ, holiday decorations, 'sexy' bar games, rooftops, cash prizes, etc."

Meanwhile, some thoughts via Twitter... including a little campaigning for a mayoral run in 2021...

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

A campaign to #SitOutSantaCon

SantaCon is scheduled for Saturday... ahead of that, DiMassimo Goldstein, an NYC-based ad agency, along with Crew Cuts, a broadcasting and media production company, launched a #SitOutSantaCon campaign. (The website notes that the campaign is also brought to you by "Decent People Everywhere.")

And there's a video, described this way:

This year, tens of thousands of people will flood the streets for SantaCon in cities across America. Like every year, adults will see overserved Santas, inebriated elves and reckless Rudolphs.

But what will the children see?

The #SitOutSantaCon website features a variety of posters and GIFs to share...

Not taking part in SantaCon is one thing. It's a choice. One problem with SantaCon, depending on where you are, is that you don't have much of a choice of being surrounded by it if you decide to venture outdoors.

As Jason Gilbert wrote for the Times in 2013 (in calling for a ban):

Perhaps most distressing about SantaCon is its size and the way that it shuts down and befouls dozens of blocks. Any East Villager (I am one) can tell you that the event makes doing absolutely anything beyond one’s front stoop an impossibility, unless you own swamp waders and a riot shield.


For a New York City event of its size, however, SantaCon is distinctive, and arguably impressive, in that it contributes absolutely zero value — cultural, artistic, aesthetic, diversionary, culinary or political — to its host neighborhood. Quite simply, SantaCon is a parasite.

As for SantaCon 2017, organizers have yet to divulge what neighborhoods they'll congregate in this year.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Happenings 1 month from today

Among the Good Santa-Bad Santa events taking place on Dec. 9 ...

The 9th Annual Cookie Walk is set for Dec. 9-10 at St. Nicholas of Myra Orthodox Church on Avenue A and 10th Street (find more details here)...


Also on Dec. 9 — SantaCon... the location hasn't been disclosed yet, though the East Village is always a good possibility as the host...

Thursday, December 8, 2016

East Village venues playing host again to SantaCon

SantaCon organizers took to Twitter last evening to announce "the amazing Seven Spots of Santacon 2016," which takes place this Saturday starting at 10 a.m.

And those seven spot of SantaConning include two East Village venues, Solas and Webster Hall. The full list:

• Ainsworth Park, 111 East 18th St.
• 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar, 230 5th Ave.
• Slake, 251 West 30th St.
• Madison Square Tavern
• Webster Hall, 125 East 11th St.
• Bar 13, 35 East 13th St.
• Solas, 232 East 9th St.

The SantaConning participants will be spread far and wide. As Patch reported:

In addition to these core venues, around 50 participating bars will open their doors to the Santas and offer special SantaCon deals. Those bars — along with the route's exact starting point — will be announced [tonight].

The East Village also served as SantaCon central last year.

And from the archives last year, Gothamist interviewed the organizer of SantaCon, East Village resident Jim Glaser (not named here but in a subsequent feature in the Times).

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

SantaCon battle lines forming

Just 10 days out now from SantaCon 2016. So far, no word on where the annual [____________] will take place. Regardless, even if the hot action happens elsewhere, there are sure to be plenty of residual Santas and friends in these parts...

... which is why battle lines are already forming...

Once again, the Continental at 23 Third Ave. near St. Mark's Place is welcoming the SantaConners...

...though the sign arrived some six weeks later than last year...

Meanwhile! Around the corner at 6 St. Mark's Place...

...Barcade has put up some No Santa signage...

And noted...their response to the amNewYork piece on how to avoid SantaCon...

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


The organizer's of SantaCon have announced the date for this year's SantaCon — Dec. 10.

There's a Facebook event page to follow for more details. Not much is known now, such as what bars are participating this year and what other neighbors will be part of this.

Gothamist reports that it will start in Williamsburg. After that, who knows.

In 2015, SantaCon kicked off in McCarren Park before departing for the East Village.

The Daily News reported that the NYPD made five arrests and handed out an even 100 summonses — ranging from open container violations to disorderly conduct to public urination — during SantaCon in 2015.

Previously on EV Grieve:
SantaCon announces its path through the East Village for 2015

A SantaCon 2015 postmortem (first of several perhaps) and a look ahead to next year!

[Photo from SantaCon 2015 by Derek Berg]

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Tranquil June Sunday ruined by sight of Santa hats

Oh, the day wasn't ruined! Just a reminder that it's just six more months to SantaCon!

Photo on 7th Street between Avenue A and First Avenue by EVG Day Ruiner Correspondent Derek Berg

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The 1st Annual Santa Con for dogs is Saturday

Slum Goddess shared this flyer photo with us for — the First Annual Santa Con for Dogs

Hmm, interesting choice for branding given the outrage over the human version of SantaCon every year, an event that brings together elected officials to write letters To Whom It May Concern.

Anyway, the Canine Con is part of a celebration via The School for the Dogs on East Second Street between Avenue A and Avenue B for their clients and pets. There will be photos with Santa ... then a parade from the East Second Street facilities over to d.b.a. at 41 First Avenue between East Second Street and East Third Street. (More details are here.)

So expect more peeing and pooping on the sidewalks from participants just like last Saturday!