On Saturday, Stamford streets will be crawling with the likeness of Jolly Old Saint Nick. However, he'll probably be coming in all shapes and sizes (and sexes) and general jolliness will likely be attributed to the alcohol-induced variety.
The 2012 Stamford SantaCon, as it's known on the dedicated Facebook page being used to organize the pub crawl, isn't strictly about drinking—though there will be a lot of that too.
Proceeds being raised through the sale of limited edition T-shirts will be going to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, according to group creator and WWE employee John Harper, who's helping to organize Stamford's participation in the world-wide event.
Five hundred people have already said they would be attending the event with close to 2,000 more having been invited. That's a whole lot of red and white roaming the streets and it looks to be an all-day event.
The following is a route the group would be taking through the city, though Harper advised those looking to strictly adhere to the schedule that the businesses would be packed, so exploring Stamford in smaller groups is recommended as well.
- 12:00 p.m. - Murphy's ($3.00 Candy Cane Shots, $8.00 Pitchers of Killians or Miller Lite)
- 01:00 p.m. - Brick house
- 02:00 p.m. - Butterfield8
- 03:00 p.m. - Tigin
- 04:00 p.m. - Bradford's
- 05:00 p.m. - BarTaco
- 06:00 p.m. - BW3
- 07:00 p.m. - SBC
- 08:00 p.m. - Blackbear
- 09:00 p.m. - BarQ
- 10:00 p.m. - Tiernan's
"Rodizio's is offering half off drinks to anyone dressed as a Santa. It's across from UConn so you can go before heading to BarTaco or after Tiernan's," Harper also posted.
There are no fees to join the festivities. Simply head to a destination dressed as Santa and join in the fun with a bunch of other elves from the North Pole.
On Sunday afternoon, renowned authors and illustrators will help celebrate The Ferguson Library’s Children’s Holiday Book Festival from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Main Branch at Bedford and Broad streets.
The event is a fundraising initiative for the library and features lots of holiday fun and 13 authors who will be present to sign books and take part in workshops and programs.
Featured authors and illustrators that will be available include:
- Nina Crews – Critically acclaimed author and illustrator of stories featuring young children, including Jack and the Beanstalk
- Jane Dyer – Illustrator of more than 50 books, including the NYT bestseller Time for Bed by Mem Fox
- Stephanie Greene – Author of the popular “Owen Foote” and “Princess Posey” series
- David A. Johnson – The talented illustrator of several picture books, including On Sand Island, which was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year
- Barbara McClintock – Her books have won four NYT Best Books Awards. Her latest illustrated book is Leave Your Sleep, written and recorded by Natalie Merchant
- Wendell Minor – Illustrator of award-winning picture books, including the NYT bestselling Reaching for the Moon by Buzz Aldrin
- Jerry Pinkney – Illustrator of more than 100 picture books and recipient of the 2010 Caldecott Award for The Lion and the Mouse (signing from 2 to 3 p.m.)
- Heidi Stemple – Author of over a dozen books, including Not All Princesses Dress in Pink, co-authored with her mother, Jane Yolen
- Lauren Tarshis – Author of the popular “I Survived” series and award-winning, Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree
- Nancy Tafuri – Illustrator of the 1985 Caldecott Honor Book, Have You Seen My Duckling, and author of more than 45 books for the very young
- Nancy Wallace – Creates critically acclaimed informational books, including Look! Look! Look! at Sculpture, with her signature collage style
- Jane Yolen – Author of more than 300 books, including the popular picture book How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?
- Jane Breskin Zalben – Author and illustrator of Mousterpiece, a Mouse-sized Guide to Modern Art
- Also featuring Over the Moon – A lavishly-illustrated book/cd set with 17 new lullabies. Conceived by Kate Dawson; created by Jodi Glucksman and Barbara Aronica-Buck. Proceeds from this book benefit breast cancer research.
Special events and activities include:
- 1:15 and 3 p.m. - Sing-a-long with ‘Dr. Ev’ in the first floor children’s room
- 1:30 – The making of Mousterpiece with author and illustrator Jane Breskin Zalben
- 2:15 – Participate in a book reading and sing-along with author and illustrator Nina Crews
- 3:15 – Bring history alive with author Laren Tarshis and the “I Survived” series
- 4:00 – Create a princess or magician’s wand with author Stephanie Greene
On Sunday, after Saturday's full day of drinking, Santa makes another appearance in Stamford at Landmark Square and Latham Park at 5 p.m. for the Heights & Lights family-oriented event.
Heights & Lights is a tree-lighting ceremony that also features Santa rappelling 22 stories down the side of Landmark Square as part of the fun. This year, it's been announced Santa will be joined by guest rappelers Bobby Valentine and Brian Cashman.
The Jumpers Orchestra will be on hand providing live festive music and the annual lighting of Stamford's Holiday Tree will take place. The event will also feature fireworks to wrap everything up, according to the Stamford Downtown Special Services District.
Free cocoa will be served at the Unitarian Universalist Society.
Additionally, if you're looking to do a little holiday shopping and help fund the furthering of Stamford youth's education, the Westhill High School's Stamford FFA Holiday Shop 2012 kicks off Dec. 1. and until Dec. 20.
The hours are Sat, December 1st and 8th from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Monday - Friday from December 5th to Dec. 20th from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The shop is open in the new Agriscience Building greenhouses on Westhill High School's campus. Enter through the large atrium doors at the front of the building. There are a large selection of poinsettias from four to 10 inches with prices starting at $3.75. There will also be a large selection of other holiday plants, including zygo cactuses, frosty ferns and cyclamen, with prices starting at $2.00. Wreaths and holiday centerpieces will also be sold.
Money raised through the event helps fund scholarships for agriscience seniors.
For further information, contact Stamford FFA, Westhill High School, 125 Roxbury Road, Stamford, CT 06902, (203) 977-4974 or visit http://www.westhillweb.com/agriscience-program.aspx
Finally, Stamford emergency responders are kicking off charitable endeavors that will help make lives just a little easier for residents in need throughout the community.
The Stamford Professional Firefighters Association has kicked off the seventh annual toy drive this week and will run for the duration of the holiday season.
Last year, the event raised over 1,000 toys for children in need in the Stamford community.
Anyone wishing to participate in the toy drive can drop off a new, unwrapped toy at any SFRD Firehouse between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. any day of the week. Gift cards and wrapping paper will also be welcome and used to purchase or wrap age appropriate toys. Drop-off locations are as follows:
- Central Fire Station – 629 Main Street
- South End Fire Station- 215 Washington Blvd.
- Westside Fire Station- 80 Fairfield Avenue
- Shippan Fire Station- 364 Shippan Avenue
- Woodside Fire Station- 1620 Washington Blvd.
- Glenbrook Fire Station- 17 Arthur Place
- Engine Company #7- 987 Hope Street (Springdale Station)
- Engine Company #8- 28 Vine Road
- Engine Company #9- 684 Long Ridge Road (Stamford EMS)
Firefighters will deliver toys to children at the Franklin Street Shelter, the Salvation Army, the Wilson Food Pantry, pediatric patients at Stamford Hospital and selected families in response to Dear Santa letters.
The Stamford Police Association (SPA) has begun collecting warm winter coats, hats, scarves and gloves as a part of its annual community coat drive. Donations are being accepted through Friday, December 14 in the lobby of Stamford Police headquarters at 805 Bedford Street.
Last year, the Stamford Police Association drive collected 170 new or lightly used winter coats along with hats, scarves and gloves. The winter coats will be distributed through Person to Person, a Darien-based organization that helps those who lack basic necessities including warm clothing in the winter.
According to Police Officer Jerry Junes, the SPA’s coat drive coordinator, “As the weather continues to get colder, one warm coat can make a drastic difference in people’s lives. We are hoping to help as many people as possible in the coming weeks.”
For more information or if you would like to donate a coat but cannot get to Stamford Police Headquarters, please contact Stamford Police Officer Junes at 203.977.4420.