Seventh Annual Santa Pub Crawl to Benefit MS
HARTFORD, Conn. – Look out Hartford; Santa Claus is coming to town.
Christmas spirit will ring through the streets of Hartford as more than 100 Santas descend on Hartford for a worthy cause.
On Saturday, Dec. 1, downtown Hartford taverns and their patrons will be joined by more than 200 Santas, elves and other holiday figures during the seventh annual Santa Charity Pub Tour to benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter.
“For the past three years, we’ve had about 200 Santas come out for the pub crawl. Last year we raised more than $4,000 to help in the fight against multiple sclerosis,” said West Hartford resident Kevin O’Connell, coordinator of the annual event. “The event is made up of merry individuals who enjoy having a good time – especially if it’s for a worthy cause.”
O’Connell is a member of the Hartford Wanderers Rugby Club. In 2006, the first pub crawl took shape when members of the rugby team donned Santa suits and popped into Hartford pubs to spread holiday goodwill. The event has grown in size each year, with donations coming from the participating bars, additional sponsors and the individual fundraising efforts of the Santas.
“I have friends who are battling the effects of multiple sclerosis,” O’Connell shared. “We found a unique way to celebrate the season and an even more distinctive way to fundraise for a great cause.”
The signature aspect of the event takes place when the Santas congregate at the top of Pratt Street. After some caroling, a bell rings, signaling the Running of the Santas down Pratt Street toward Main Street.
“The restaurants and pubs have been amazing to us,” O’Connell said. “They have all contributed generously to ensure a spot on Santa’s nice list.”
More than 6,000 Connecticut residents live with multiple sclerosis, a chronic and often disabling disease of the central nervous system. There currently is no cure. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot be predicted.
The Santa Charity Pub Tour is an example of Do It Yourself fundraising. Funds raised through Do It Yourself fundraising events ensure ongoing scientific research to find a cure and provide for the continuation of vital programs and services offered by the chapter.
All are welcome to participate in the seventh annual Santa Charity Pub Tour. Santa suits are not required, but holiday attire is encouraged. There is a suggested $10 pledge to participate.
For more information on the Santa pub crawl and a list of participating pubs and taverns, please visit www.hartfordsantas.com, or contact Kevin O’Connell at 860-995-7206, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about Do It Yourself Fundraising, multiple sclerosis and the many ways to become involved, please visit the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter’s website at www.ctfightsMS.org.