Category Archives: SantaCon

SantaCon Gets an Undeserved Bad Wrap in the Media

I did my personal SantaCon photowalk yesterday (12/12/15) around the East Village in Manhattan getting some images of the revelers. While SantaCon kicked off in Brooklyn this year, vs. Times Square, I decided to be lazy and shoot the assorted Kris Kringles, Elves & Reindeers later in the day in my home borough.

Being out around 4pm the conventional wisdom would have said that SantaCon participants–reveling since 10am–would have been all liquored up by then. But from what I saw, it was far from the case. People were having a good time but were far from drunk, and I went around to several of the sanctioned bars on SantaCon’s route to take pics. The NYPD, it was reported, make no (zero, nada) arrests for drunk & disorderly conduct.

Yet, it seems several New York media outlets (The Daily News, NY Post and Gawker being fairly egregious) have a narrative they want to put forward of a bunch of rowdy drunks in red, instead of seeing this as a fun celebration — which is what I’ve found over the years with people attending SantaCon. Frankly, I’ve seen worse behavior from spectators at the NY Marathon than at SantaCon.

Okay, rant over. Here are a few images from my SantaCon photowalk. More images on my website.

All photos © 2015 RZF Images, all rights reserved. Neither these nor other images on this site or my website may be used without written permission.


HO, HO, HO! ‘Tis SantaCon Season!


More images on my website:

SantaCon kicked off this morning in Times Square under a cloud of controversy, but revelers there were in a happy — and what seemed — a sober but caffeinated mood. 

While people have been calling out the bad behavior that is probably relatively minor among tens of thousands of Kris Kringle revelers overtaking parts of mid-town Manhattan (Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood nipped SantaCon from having the sleigh touch down there), most people seem to view this as a fun social gathering with friends. 

Also, the event raises tens of thousands of dollars for charity. 

From a photographer’s standpoint, it’s a great event to shoot thousands of people dressed in similar themed costumes, all having a great time. Here are some images from this morning, with more hundreds more that can be seen on my website. 

All photos © 2014 RZF Images, all rights reserved. Neither these nor other images on this site may be used without written permission.

SantaCon NYC 2012

SantaCon NYC was in full force on Saturday 12/15. Some 30,000 people registered to be part of this annual gathering. In addition to it being a large social event (though it’s detractors say it’s nothing but a large pub crawl), SantaCon promotes charitable contributions from participants. Last year SantaCon NYC raised $10,000 for Toys for Tots.

Here are a few images I took in and around Grand Central Station and in mid-town on Saturday. I shot these with my new Nikon 1 V2 camera, Nikon’s new mirrorless camera, with interchangeable lenses. It produces very impressive images for a small camera.

SantaCon NYC 2011

SantaCon has been an annual event in NYC for the past 15 years and took place yesterday (Dec. 10). Essentially a pub crawl cum flash mob (with its own “interpretation” of Christmas carols), it attracts hundreds of people of all (legal-drinking) ages to dress up in full Santa or Mrs. Claus regalia, elves, or other Holiday-related costumes. You’ll even find a few Hannukah Harrys & human Menorahs. The head Santa guides the herd via Twitter to various locations around town.

I caught up with SantaCon in Times Square, where our Santas took over the red stairs in Duffy Square–much to the chagrin of the NYPD patrolling the area, who dispersed the crowd of Kringles after a while. Lumps of coal in these guys’ stockings this year!

Here are a few shots from SantaCon. More can be seen on my Flickr page: