It looks like Hoboken’s annual SantaCon, the rowdy bar crawl with revelers dressed like old St. Nick, is not going to happen this year. Hoboken’s police chief is warning anyone who might be thinking about participating that they won’t be welcomed warmly.

Chief Ken Ferrante warned bars not to try to hold the event, telling NJ.com, “If bars try to take part in a SantaCon during this huge second wave of coronavirus that we’re having, if there are violations that day, they’re going to pay the price for it,” adding “they’re going to get hit with sanctions.”

Hoboken’s version of the event (there are others, too) has grown and caused some resentment in the Mile Square City with the 2019 party resulting in 500 calls for service resulting in $75,000 worth of police overtime; there were eight arrests and twenty hospitalizations. The event has grown so notorious that HBO’s John Oliver actually did a segment on SantaCons and singled out Hoboken. You can find a link to the video here, but be warned. The language is NSFW.

SantaCon is not a sanctioned event in Hoboken, but one group that organizes a bar crawl says on its Facebook page: “Regretfully, given the CDC guidelines about social distancing, the recent spike in COVID-19 cases and the capacity limitations in our local bars and restaurants, we will NOT be organizing a Santacon Bar-crawl in Hoboken this year.” It goes on to say “we would strongly advise against participating.. it should come as no surprise to you that this is just not a good idea, though ultimately we defer to the guidance issued by governor Murphy and Hoboken City Hall.”

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.

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