WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Forty drunken Santas rampaged through central Auckland, stealing from stores and assaulting security guards, the New Zealand Herald reported on Sunday, in a protest against the commercialization of Christmas.
Police said some of the Santas threw beer bottles, one tried to climb the mooring rope of a cruise ship and a security guard was punched during the fracas.
"They came in, said 'Merry Christmas' and then helped themselves," convenience store staff member Changa Manakynda told the Herald, which reported the Santas also attacked a Christmas tree.
The event organizer, Alex Dyer, had warned the antics would only stop when someone was arrested, said the Herald, which linked the incident to "Santarchy."
Santarchy (www.santarchy.com) and online encyclopedia wikipedia (www.wikipedia.org) record protests going back around 10 years in the United States, with participants marking Christmas in anti-commercial manner involving street theater, pranks and public drunkenness."
Or how about
LONDON (Reuters) - British police said Friday they were looking for a Santa acting suspiciously -- a flasher who had repeatedly exposed himself to women, including on one occasion while dressed as Father Christmas.
Officers in Swanage on the south coast of England said the flasher had struck a number of times since December 6, and a week later exposed himself whilst wearing a Santa Claus outfit."
or perhaps this interests you
Santa Wars as deposed British world champ fumes
LONDON (AFP) - The British Father Christmas who lost his Santa of the Year world crown has lashed out, citing a suspected campaign to stop him from winning again that has damaged "Santa morale".
Ron Horniblew, 70, has been authorised by the Master Santa in Greenland and is part of the elite international Santa circuit who compete at the Santa Winter Games, where up to 50 Father Christmases compete for the world title.
Estonian accordionist Aare Rebban grabbed the crown "amid dark mutterings of political voting, professional jealousy and backbiting", The Mail on Sunday newspaper said.
At the Games in Gallivare in Swedish Lapland, Santas sled, race reindeer-drawn sleighs, eat porridge -- with a splash on the beard earning instant disqualification -- climb chimneys and deliver presents under the watchful gaze of a panel of judges.
Horniblew said it all came down to the reindeer sled race.
"You go up two at a time, head-to-head," he told The Mail on Sunday.
"I was up against the Estonian and I won the race. He actually fell off his sleigh. But he got awarded extra points for falling in a particularly Santa-like style.
"I was pretty miffed at that, I can tell you."
Horniblew revelled in his world title win the previous year but revealed just how tough it is at the top.
"We are all very serious. It's not a fun thing. These guys are all Santa Claus in their own right in their own countries," he said.