Vail Today: Santa Con brings dozens of Santas to slopes of Vail (video)
Dozens of people wearing Santa costumes descended on Vail Mountain on Tuesday, Dec. 19 in honor of Santa Con, an annual dress-up day for valley locals. Lindsey Fink, the organizer of the event, said that Santa Con started in Manhattan as a pub crawl several years ago and the trend has spread to many cities, but she thought a ski resort would be a great fit.
“It’s so much fun dressing up and walking around town and skiing on the hill. I thought this would be perfect for a ski town and would get everyone in the Christmas spirit,” Fink said.
Fink is the general manager at Elway’s restaurant in Vail Village and said they choose to do this during the week to accommodate most of the participant’s schedules since many or them work nights in the restaurant industry.
“We all work so hard over the holidays, so this is a way to celebrate before the long work weeks ahead,” Fink said.
What started out with about 20 Santas last year has grown to nearly 100 people donning the red suits and white beards. In addition to the Santa costumes, there were reindeer and elf outfits.
The event has also attracted some sponsors. Vail Brewing Company donated a keg for their après ski party at Shakedown Bar and Ski Town All-Stars, an apparel company started in Vail by Chris Bovina donated custom hats for the event.
“I was a part of Santa Con last year and really wanted to get more involved,” Bovina said. “We’ve got a great following now and a lot of interest in the event and we’d like to team up with a local non profit and make it a charity event eventually.”
Danny Sojka, a server at Vintage restaurant in Vail Village, found out about the event the day before and borrowed a Santa jacket from his roommate’s girlfriend to fit the part. “I look more like Mrs. Claus with a beard,” Sojka said.
“It’s funny, I rode the bus over here and all the little kids were staring at me and wanted to talk to me,” Sojka said. “That’s probably the coolest part, the reaction I got from the little kids.”
The graduates of Vail Mountain School’s class of 2019 will be off to far-flung destinations next fall, set to enter college in one of 16 different states or explore the world on a gap year. One grad is even attending college in Canada.