Bronx residents welcome Santa early with local SantaCon

Santa made an early appearance in Mott Haven on Friday as the first South Bronx SantaCon kicked off.  
Participants dressed up in their jolliest Santa outfits and brought toys, which served as free drink tickets.  
The bar crawl started at Bronx Native on Lincoln Street, and participants made stops at eight local restaurants and bars in the area. 
The event was organized by J. Silva Events, Canon Strategy Group, and the Hoodspitality Group. They teamed up to rethink ways to collect toys that will be wrapped and gifted to children who are currently in the city’s migrant shelters.  
“For me, it’s about creating these engaging experiences in our community that create more community,” said Amaurys Grullon, owner of Bronx Native. “We are gathering, we are breaking bread together, we’re having conversations, we are having fun and at the same time we’re giving back.” 
The Santas took to the streets until 8 p.m. and capped the night off at San-Kofa on Third Avenue, where tickets to Mariah Carey’s Christmas concert at MSG were raffled off.