New Orleans about to be overrun by running Santas

2 costumed run events this weekend

Don Ames
December 07, 2018 - 6:45 am

Plenty of Santa Clauses are scheduled to hit the streets of the Warehouse District and City Park Saturday.

The afternoon features two Santa run/walk races and costume contests.

The first is the The Allstate Sugar Bowl Celebration in the Oaks Run/Walk and Costume Contest in City Park.

"Santa Claus comes in at 2 o'clock, before the race. Then, when it's over with at 4 o'clock, you get exclusive entry into the light show at "Celebration in the Oaks," says Race Director, Eric Stuart.

He says the event is definitely more fun than run.

"Of the 25-hundred people we have, maybe 10 of them are runners. The majority of them are families, kids in strollers, people in costumes."

"We have a costume contest, as well. So, you'll see a lot of elves, reindeer, Santa Clauses...all out there running...or walking." 

The day is filled with hot cocoa, pictures with Santa, and much more! Registration includes complimentary entry into the walking tour of “Celebration in the Oaks", Botanical Garden, Storyland and Carousel Gardens, before the gates are open to the general public.

The fun run takes place rain or shine. But if it rains, participants will get an alternate date for the walking tour.

Also Saturday afternoon...

"It's the annual 'Running of the Santas', which is one of New Orleans' most premier holiday events," says spokesman Steve Schulkens. "It's really a fun event, with costumes, music, drinks, and thousands of people." 

"We get anywhere between two and four thousand each year. This is the 8th year. So, depending on weather and other conditions, we're looking at a couple of thousand at least going to the Warehouse District filling the streets with Santa Clauses and other costume characters."

The fun “run” starts at Manning’s and ends at Generations Hall, where a full evening of entertainment follows, with music by Category 6 and Flow Tribe. Naturally, it includes a costume party.
"The costumes for the 'Running of the Santas' are some of the most spectacular you'll see anywhere," says Schulkens. "We've got live human Christmas trees, elves, Santas, Mrs. Claus, living packages,'ve got to come."   

"You know, we call the Running of the Santas, really, the 'Holy Trinity.' It's got everything New Orleans wants. It's got drinks, music and costumes."

The event benefits the 'That Others May Live Foundation,' providing scholarships and aid to surviving children of Air Force Rescue Heroes who gave the ultimate sacrifice during a rescue mission.

Other weekend holiday events:

Luna Fete
December 6-9, 6pm-10pm
New Orleans free festival of light, art, and technology. The celebration features a new Gallier Hall projection-mapping presentation, digital sculptures, and art installations animated with technology to delight audiences of all ages.

St. Augustine Church Concerts
Kim Che’re
Saturday December 8, 4pm-5pm
Free secure parking is available in the church's parking lot - enter from Henriette Delille Street (formerly St. Claude Avenue). All concerts are free and open to the public and last approximately one hour.

St. Louis Cathedral Concerts
Shannon Powell
(Traditional Jazz)
Sunday December 9, 6pm-7pm
Fronting on Jackson Square in the heart of the French Quarter, the historic St. Louis Cathedral and Basilica plays host to free annual holiday concerts, produced by French Quarter Festivals, Inc. The St. Louis Cathedral Christmas concerts generally run for an hour and are free and open to the public.

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