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The Connecticut Chapter works to improve the quality of life for people affected by MS in Connecticut and raise funds for critical MS research. Join the movement toward a world free of MS.


Santa Takes Over Hartford, Raises $3,600

December 4, 2013

7th Annual Santa Charity Pub Tour

On Saturday, Dec. 1, more than 250 Santas and other holiday characters, descended upon Hartford for the 7th Annual Santa Charity Pub Tour. The annual event, coordinated by West Hartford resident Kevin O'Connell, raised more than $3,600.

O’Connell, who has friends living with multiple sclerosis, 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.

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Left to right: Blackwood, N.J. residents Tim Kohlmyer, Pat Sicerelli, Craig Palma (rear) and Plainville resident, Erin Raponey, pose at Pig’s Eye Pub in downtown Hartford during the seventh annual Santa Charity Pub Tour on Saturday, Dec. 1. Kohlmyer, whose mom, Stacie, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2002, makes the annual trip to Connecticut with his friends for the pub crawl fundraiser.


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Reindeer Mary Almeida (left), Enfield, and Jenn Mulazzi, Newington, pose at Pig’s Eye Pub.


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West Hartford Santas Rick Green, Kevin Lyman, A.J. O’Brien and Gene Macy pose at The Russian Lady.


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South Windsor sisters Brittany, Lindsey, and Brooke Kelley pose at The Russian Lady in downtown Hartford during the seventh annual Santa Charity Pub Tour on Saturday, Dec. 1. Lindsey, the oldest, and her younger, twin sisters, donned holiday attire and came out in support of the cause.


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Manchester residents Glenda Nouman and Jeff Coffey pose at The Russian Lady.


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Hartford resident Tina Diorio proves she’s on the nice list at The Russian Lady.


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New London resident Ben Greiner poses with Jenn Vencus, Guilford, at The Russian Lady. Years ago, Greiner's mother passed away due to complications from MS. Greiner also volunteers for the annual Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride.


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Wolcott twins Kara (left) and Melissa Carserino pose in the Rudolph onesies at The Russian Lady.


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West Hartford resident Kevin O’Connell raises a pint with Conor Geary, Wethersfield, at City Steam Brewery Café in downtown Hartfordduring the seventh annual Santa Charity Pub Tour on Saturday, Dec. 1. The event, which benefits the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, raised more than $3,600. O’Connell, a member of the Hartford Wanderers rugby club, coordinates the event in honor of friends who live with MS. Geary works as bar manager at City Steam. City Steam offered happy hour prices for those participating in the bar crawl and donated tickets to shows at the Brew HaHa Comedy Club. City Steam recently celebrated its 15th anniversary.

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.

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

About the Connecticut Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society

The Connecticut Chapter strives to provide knowledge and assistance to help people with MS and their families maintain the highest possible quality of life. These goals are achieved through vital national and local programs.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are leading to better understanding and moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide.


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