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SantaCon 2021 live updates – Chaos in Seattle and NYC as event returns after pandemic and fights break out


SantaCon 2021 returned NYC for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, bringing chaos and at least one reported fight.

Freedom News TV posted a video of what appears to be a physical altercation between some party-goers last night.

SantaCon returned to New York City one day after Governor Kathy Hochul announced that a statewide mask mandate would be in effect starting December 13.

The event featured DJs, elaborate Santa costumes, and an eggnog waterfall contest.

SantaCon is an annual charitable bar crawl, encouraging patrons to come dressed in their best Christmas gear.

With merry Santas enjoying holiday cocktails throughout NYC, SantaCon is known to get a little rowdy.

Prior to the event, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced an alcohol ban on Metro-North and Long Island Railroads, with extra law enforcement stationed at Penn Station and Grand Central Station to confiscate any intoxicating beverages.

Read our SantaCon live blog below for the very latest news and updates …

  • SantaCon’s charitable mission

    According to the SantaCon website, the event has raised over $750,000 in previous years for charitable causes.

    This year, the charity partners for the NYC event included Neighbors Together, City Harvest, Secret Sandy Claus Project, Figment NYC, Dance Parade New York, Materials for the Arts and Clowns Without Borders.

  • SantaCon reminded attendees to drink water

    The organization shared the reminder on its Twitter account.

  • MTA alcohol ban during SantaCon

    The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced an alcohol ban on Metro-North and Long Island Railroad trains for the event in New York City.

    The ban was scheduled to go into effect at 4am on December 11, and it remained in place through noon on December 12. 

    NYC MTA Police stationed extra officers at Penn Station and Grand Central Station to confiscate any alcoholic beverages.

  • SantaCon held despite return of masks

    On December 10, New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced that New York State would be imposing mask mandates in indoor places, unless businesses require proof of vaccination, effective Monday.

    SantaCon was held just one day later, with thousands of attendees swarming the streets of New York City.

  • A look at ‘ElfCon’

    The IBO New York shared photos from the event, which took place on Sunday, December 12, following the annual SantaCon event just one day before.

  • 15-year-old hosted ‘ElfCon’

    The first-time event was scheduled for Sunday, December 12, at 10am in Union Square Park.

    The high school sophomore named Sophie called the event a “kid-friendly hot cocoa crawl,” reported the New York Post.

  • Barcade excluded Santas

    The arcade bar announced on Twitter that it would not be serving Santas who participated in the SantaCon event.

    “We ARE pouring delicious Christmas beers in the NYC-area…just not for Santas.”

  • When was SantaCon this year?

    SantaCon NYC was held on December 11, 2021, and it began at 10am EST.

    SantaCon also took place in San Francisco, California on December 11.

    The SantaCon in Hoboken, New Jersey, will take place on Saturday, December 18.

  • SantaCon 2021 locations

    The festivities in NYC began at the Christmas Spectacular, located on Broadway at 40th Street.

    The other bar locations are in Midtown and trickle down to the East Village.

    Some locations included the following:

    • Lucy’s Royal Cantina
    • Local West
    • The Liberty
    • Mustang Harry’s
    • The Ainsworth
    • Doc Holiday’s
  • SantaCon shared rules for event on Twitter

    On the official SantaCon Twitter page, event organizers shared rules for the event, to help participants “stay on the nice list.”

    Along with using crosswalks to avoid creating roadblocks, participants were instructed not to litter on the walk from bar to bar.

    Event organizers also told participants to be respectful of police, New York vaccination rules, bar staff, and any children out in the community.

  • A look at San Francisco

    Similar to the event in New York City, a considerable number of Santas filled the streets and bars.

  • SantaCon disapproved by some in San Francisco

    Many took to social media to also speak against the event.

  • Website shares ‘Santa’s Code’

    The SantaCon website has an extensive code of conduct for event participants.

    Rules include “Santa is awesome to bar staff!”

    “Pay with cash…it gets chaotic when Santa comes to town.”

    Several rules also address the alcohol-heavy nature of the event.

    “Santa spreads joy: Not terror. Not vomit. Not trash. Would you want those under your tree?”

  • Twitter users poke fun at SantaCon

    Twitter users made fun of the annual SantaCon tradition in New York City.

    “It’s noon and a group of 8 hammered Santa’s just stumbled into this quiet coffee shop I’m in,” said one user.

    “And that’s how I learned it’s SantaCon today.”

    Another user posted a fake “emergency alert” telling New Yorkers to seek shelter from the crowds.

  • SantaCon thanks donors

    The organization issued a tweet, thanking those who donated to this year’s SantaCon event in New York City.

  • SantaCon not a favorite of some

    One Twitter user said that the day was better in 2020, referencing that it was canceled.

  • Signs on subway announce alcohol ban

    Signage on the subways in NYC, as well as at Metro-North and Long Island Railroad stops, reminded passengers of the alcohol ban in place during SantaCon.

    The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced an alcohol ban on Metro-North and Long Island Railroad trains for the event in New York City.

    The ban is planned to go into effect at 4am on December 11, and it will remain in place through noon on December 12. 

    NYC MTA Police stationed extra officers at Penn Station and Grand Central Station to confiscate any alcoholic beverages.

  • How many bars participate in SantaCon?

    This year, the SantaCon website reported 46 venues would host SantaCon revelers.

    Partiers made their way from midtown to the East Village.

  • Did SantaCon happen in 2020?

    SantaCon was cancelled in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

    Participants in the 2021 SantaCon must show their vaccine cards to enter bars along the route.

  • SantaCon’s eggnog waterfall contest

    Bars along the SantaCon route held contests for partygoers, and had special DJ setups to keep festivities high.

    One SantaCon venue held an “eggnog waterfall” event.

    Eggnog splashes down onto SantaCon partygoersCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Eggnog splashes down onto SantaCon partygoersCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Scenes from an eggnog waterfall contest at SantaConCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Scenes from an eggnog waterfall contest at SantaConCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Eggnog-splashed partiers at SantaConCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Eggnog-splashed partiers at SantaConCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
  • A LOOK AT THE VARIETY OF SANTA STYLES

    Revelers take selfies during SantaCon
    Revelers take selfies during SantaConCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    One attendee holds up a festive sign
    One attendee holds up a festive signCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Attendees came decked out in holiday attire
    Attendees came decked out in holiday attireCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
  • WHEN DID SANTACON START?

    The first SantaCon was held in San Francisco, in 1994.

    The first New York SantaCon was in 1998.

    Now, the event is reportedly held in 44 countries worldwide.

  • HUGE CROWDS LEAD TO SANTACON PUSHBACK

    Plenty of people took to social media Friday night and Saturday morning to complain about SantaCon revelers descending upon New York.

    The event is an all-day bar crawl that brings crowds to Manhattan from outside the city, and encourages heavy alcohol use.

    Crowds usually total in the tens of thousands.

    In 2013, the New York Police Department even requested that bars refuse service to SantaCon participants, according to reports from USA Today.

  • DOES SANTACON LEAD TO ARRESTS?

    Although SantaCon is known for bringing drunken mischief to the streets of participating cities, it’s not clear if anyone was arrested at the NYC event this year.

    In 2019, at least two people were arrested in New York in an altercation related to SantaCon, the local CBS affiliate reported.

    That same year, the Hoboken event spiraled out of control, with police reporting 8 arrests and over 500 calls for service.

  • SNAPS CAPTURE CHAOS IN THE STREETS DURING SANTACON

    Revelers pack the street near Times Square
    Revelers pack the street near Times SquareCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun
    Some revelers even dressed up their dogs
    Some revelers even dressed up their dogsCredit: Alex Kent for The US Sun





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