Grimacing monsters with long twisted horns and rattling chains, tearful children, lots of artfully swirling fire—D.C.’s Krampusnacht is not a typical Christmas celebration, but it just might be the most fun.
Now in its fifth year, D.C.’s annual Krampusnacht (Krampus Night) not only lets residents get weird but also does good, serving as the largest fundraiser for a local charity Santa’s Cause DC which buys school supplies and presents for foster kids.
“It started off with us watching videos from the European Krampuslaufs [Krampus runs] and realizing that with the group we had and our love of costuming and this kind of stuff, that we wanted to try to do something here,” says Michael Clay, one of the original Krampusnacht organizers. “We paired with Santa’s Cause because we thought ‘let’s see how it goes and at least we’re doing something for good as well as fun.'”
Rooted in Austro-Bavarian Alpine legend, Krampus is a sinister companion of Saint Nicholas. Rather than rewarding nice children with gifts, the dark horned figure described as half goat, half man punishes the naughty ones….read more here.