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Santa Crawl supports two valley nonprofits

by Sarah Hauck
shauck@recordcourier.com
Troy Phillips of Battle Born Wine poses as the Grinch, a possible costume for Santa Crawl attendees Saturday.
Special to The R-C |

Santa and his pointy-eared and hooved helpers will take over the bars of Gardnerville on Saturday for one last hoorah before they’re all business Christmas Day.

A collaboration by Ryan Lamb of JT Basque Bar and Dining Room and Troy Phillips of Battle Born Wine, the sixth annual Santa Crawl benefiting Austin’s House and The Carson Valley Community Food Closet is 6-9 p.m. Saturday.

“People look forward to it,” Phillips said. “It’s all about being community oriented and dressing up. It’s a great way to get into the spirit of things. We try not to do it the same night as Reno’s, so the college kids that come back have something to do with family and friends. People look forward to it every year and its just a fun night out.”

Santa crawlers are encouraged to don their favorite holiday character and hit the local watering holes to receive a stamp on their ticket in hopes of winning a raffle prize.

“Its kind of like a wine walk for the bars. It’s geared toward them having a good night of revenue and having a fun, safe, walkable event,” Phillips said.

After a $10 donation sign-up fee, Santas, elves and reindeer can wander from Rancho Grande, French Bar, Battle Born Wines, JT Basque, Nevada Ugly and Buckaroos to enjoy drink specials and the company of others.

“The camaraderie of things keeps this successful. You don’t have to drink anywhere to get your ticket stamped. All of us (businesses) are donating prizes,” Phillips said. “You can go out and be a DD and still participate and have a good time.”

All of the proceeds collected from the evening will be split equally between Austin’s House and the food closet.

“The donation helps them (food closet) buy things like proteins and dairy products that they don’t get from the can drives,” Phillips said. “The amount grows every year. Last year we raised just over $700.”

Although there is no costume contest, Phillips said there is never a lack of creativity or enthusiasm for dressing up.

“The costumes get better and better every year. The full Santa suits are always a hit. We’ve seen some inflatable Santas, full body suits, different variations of Santas like a Chinese themed Santa and different takes on elves and reindeer,” Phillips said.

This year will be different without the inclusion of The Overland and Sharkey’s but Phillips is hopeful the event will still be a success.

“We will have them next year which will be great,” Phillips said.

The coordinators encourage carpooling and using taxis after the event.

“I enjoyed the one (Santa Crawl) in Reno so much when I moved down here I noticed we weren’t doing anything much cooperative wise. This was a great way to do something for the community and for a charity as well,” Phillips said.

Participants can sign-up and get their ticket to be stamped at Battle Born Wine or Rancho Grande.

For more information call 782-7684.


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