RED MENACE: 17 Arrested as SantaCon Punches, Spits in the Face of Hoboken

RED MENACE: 17 Arrested as SantaCon Punches, Spits in the Face of Hoboken

A total of 17 arrests for SantaCon 2017, with lowlights including a Hoboken Police Officer punched in the face by a female perpetrator, and another disorderly person spitting in the face of an officer during his arrest.

Hoboken Police Chief Ken Ferrante‘s twitter account was pretty busy last night, detailing all the mayhem brought on by Hoboken SantaCon—which drew in an estimated 5,000 participants and choked the sidewalks of downtown Hoboken with red-clad revelers.

Those arrested hailed from places like Middletown, Bloomfield, Hewitt, Linden, Hopatcong, and other towns on the NJ Transit lines that put Hoboken in the crosshairs for events such as this. The city’s convenience and remarkable accessibility—which make it such a desirable place to live—leave it vulnerable to a concentrated influx of antisocial behavior from surrounding areas.

An online petition to ban the event gained momentum yesterday, as Hoboken residents stayed home behind closed doors and witnessed the melee via social media.

The “official” list of participating venues included:

  • Hoboken Bar & Grill
  • Texas Arizona
  • Cadillac Cantina
  • Biggies
  • The Shannon
  • Birch
  • Hotel Victor Bar & Grill
  • 1 Republik
  • Havana Cafe
  • Mills Tavern
  • Black Bear Bar
  • Tally Ho
  • Village Pourhouse

According to the good people at, seemingly, “a portion of proceeds will be donated to Kidz1st, Inc.” Earlier in the week, hMAG reached out to regarding the charity, and they had no information. We were directed to Hoboken Bar & Grill for more information, but as of press time our phone call remains unanswered.

“Picture thousands of Santa’s [sic] running wild through the streets of Hoboken and having access to some of the best bars you can imagine,” says, on the Hoboken SantaCon event page. “That’s exactly what you’ll get with this great event.”

Meanwhile, many other bars and restaurants flat-out refused to serve anyone involved in the unsanctioned pub crawl.

Mayor-Elect Ravi Bhalla has said, “SantaCon is not welcome in Hoboken.” Saturday’s event has proven to be more disruptive than LepreCon, the annual snarl that has come to replace the infamous Hoboken St. Patrick’s Day celebration.

In addition to the 17 arrests, there were 51 City Ordinance summonses (public drinking, public urination, disorderly conduct), 32 moving violation summonses, 55 individuals transported to local hospitals, and 282 calls for service—all within a 16-hour period.

(*Story updated at 11:55 a.m.)

Authored by: hMAG