Volume 20, Number 31 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | December 14 - 20, 2007

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Downtown Expess photos by Tequila Minsky

Santa mob chug beer and spread cheer on merry way

Following text message directions, the New York installment of SantaCon — a mass gathering of people dressed in cheap Santa Claus costumes — gathered Saturday afternoon at the Christopher St. Pier. After packing into the Ear Inn on Spring St., where the Santas quaffed copious amounts of beer, they headed to the Spring St. subway station and then to Times Square. They forged on to Grand Central and Astor Pl., continuing their wacky Santa fun. Later that evening, they filled the bars on Ludlow St. Started in San Francisco in 1994, SantaCon has become a global phenomenon. New York’s version mainly involves a pub crawl, spontaneous interactions with passersby and generally having a good time. Elsewhere SantaCon is known as Naughty Santas, Santarchy and Santapalooza. While New York’s event is known for being peaceful, a Santarchy in New Zealand two years ago turned into what was described as a “mini-riot.”

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