Santas descend on Hoboken for city's notorious SantaCon bar crawl; arrest, summonses reported

Adam Warner
December 07, 2019 - 3:29 pm

Peter Dench/Getty Images/File Photo


HOBOKEN (1010 WINS) – Santa Clause is coming to Hoboken—but many in the city, including police Chief Kenneth Ferrante, aren’t looking forward to it.

Every year, thousands of thirsty revelers get their drink on in Christmas costumes for a good cause, but the event always leads to arrests and not-so-merry tales of drunken chaos.

Ferrante told 1010 WINS that police are in close contact with the participating bars so they can respond quickly if any Santas get sloppy.

“We look to work with the bars. We want good communication, because the last thing we want is brawls. We don’t want civilians getting injured. We don’t want police officers getting injured. We don’t want underage drinkers. We don’t want 50 to 100 people going to the hospitals like we’ve had in the past for over-intoxication,” Ferrante said.

An arrest had already been made by 2 p.m. Ferrante, who live tweets about the event every year, said a 29-year-old New Jersey man was arrested for criminal trespass and obstruction. He tweeted that 23 city ordinance summonses had also been issued, including 19 for open containers.

Last year, 14 people were arrested and 33 got tickets for public intoxication or urination.

“These 11 bars, they know we do not like this event at the Hoboken Police Department,” Ferrante said. “All bars will be treated fairly, but any incidences of unruly behavior, fights, underage drinking, overcrowding; there will be tavern complaints and there will be issues that will be brought in front of the local ABC board.”

New Jersey transit has banned alcohol on trains Saturday and Sunday to help control the event.

Anyone who participates in SantaCon is asked to bring gifts for kids to donate to charity. The bars will be collecting them.

Manhattan’s annual SantaCon bar crawl is next weekend.

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