’Tis the Season: The Moving, Grooving Santas and Rudolphs of Little Italy


When it comes to the type of nutso holiday decorations we’re in awe of this month on Grub Street, Little Italy pretty much takes the cheesecake. From the Christmas tree floating above Ferrara to the Macy’s-balloon-like Santa perched on a balcony above Mulberry Street — where to even begin? How about with the surreally anthropomorphic stuff, starting with the robot Claus at Florio’s Grill & Cigar Bar, which has also added nutcrackers to its usual assortment of cigar-store Indians and signed photos of Bush and his generals. That’s right, this thing sometimes moves and talks. Also, check out the creepy cyborg Santa that’s “Ho ho ho”-ing and swaying to “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” outside of Pomodoro.

How long before this thing gets decapitated by some drunks coming out of Shark Bar? And how long before someone decides to tip one of these moving wire reindeer that last night were grazing to the “Grinch Who Stole Christmas” soundtrack outside of Il Cortile? Speaking of Grinches: Novella, one of the more chic Little Italy establishments (which nevertheless displayed a moving, talking skeleton on Halloween), chose to go with a static Jolly Ol’ St. Nick this year.