LES Dwellers Declares ‘SantaCon Free Zone’ for the Lower East Side
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New Yorkers across the Boroughs are finally rising up against SantaCon. As previously reported, when the bar crawl chose Bushwick as HQ last week, the Brooklyn enclave refused to allow the partying.
The vociferous backlash here on the Lower East Side, however, is largely attributed to the spark ignited by the LES Dwellers block association, who generated momentous grassroots opposition last year. Their pithy SantaCon Free Zone posters littered Hell Square, and splashed headlines across local media outlets. It could be argued that the stand taken here helped Bushwick say no to the “charity organization” this year.
Meanwhile, the flashpoint crew of activists are at it again.
The Dwellers sent letters to businesses both within and without the Hell Square confines urging owners not to support the annual shitshow. “The anonymous organizers promise you large crowds of paying customers,” the dispatch notes. “Your neighboring bars and residents can attest that there is no benefit to serving intoxicated people in Christmas-themed costumes.”
Moreover, similar letters were also sent to elected officials (Chin, Squadron, Silver) kindly requesting support to stand united against SantaCon:
The reported philanthropic benefit (less than $3 per participant according to last year’s total funds raised) is easily offset by the economic activity that others in the neighborhood forgo during this destructive event. Small businesses earn a disproportionate share of their annual revenue (up to 50%) during the holiday shopping period. The loss of everyday and holiday businesses to local shops and services can present a yearlong challenge during this crucial spending period. While the locals and typical tourists stay away, the Santa-tourists partake only in the bar scene and eat at fast food joints (that would earn business into the wee hours with or without this event) rather than contributing to our shops, restaurants, and cultural institutions.
Do you think there will be drunk santa spillover into the Lower East Side?