Snuggie pub crawl gets cozy

By Bertha Serrano

Many consumers can’t get enough of products like Chia Obama, The Slap Chop and foot alignment socks. Someone out there felt something was missing in their life and decided to create things like teddy bears to relieve the pressure from a seat belt, a male enhancer and the latest phenomenon-Snuggies.

A group of Chicagoans decided to take these oversized blankets with sleeves  beyond the couch and to the outdoors. On April 18, the first-ever Snuggie pub crawl will take place in Chicago.

The idea for a Snuggie pub crawl came from Michael Gallagher and some friends. It was a few days after Christmas when Gallagher and his friends were talking about how hilarious they thought the Snuggie infomercial was. Someone then suggested a Snuggie pub crawl, and they ran with it.

“[The idea] came about the day after I came back from Africa, after visiting an orphanage there,” Gallagher said. “We’re expecting around 1,000-to-2,000 people to not only have a great time, but raise money for charity, as well.”

At first, the pub crawl was scheduled for March, but it had to be delayed due to the several weeks it takes to ship a Snuggie. Because the event requires participants to bring their own Snuggie, they wanted to give more people an opportunity to participate. The event would have also interfered with March Madness basketball events.

What many may not know is that those who participate will also be donating money to an orphanage. Proceeds from the pub crawl will be donated to Karama Connection/AC Orphanage in Tanzania, Africa. While attendees enjoy a $2 drangonberry/lemonade shot at some bar, all the profits from those drinks will go to the orphanage.

Connie Naber has been working with Karama Connection, the nonprofit that is in charge of handing the money over to the orphanage, for four years. The Ohio-based organization aims to help children who are orphans because of the AIDS epidemic, rampant in many nations, including Tanzania.

Naber recently decided to team up with Gallagher to help the orphanages. She said the money will be used for food, clothing, improvement to living conditions and school supplies.

“I hope it gives them a reason to know that a portion of what they’re doing is going to a charity,” she said. “There are so many orphans there right now, and anything would help these kids.”

Eight bars throughout Lincoln Park plan to participate in the event. Other happenings include a Snuggie costume contest where the most creative design will win.

Megan Osterhout is the public relations director for Ala Carte Entertainment, owner of the participating bars, restaurants and night clubs throughout Chicago. Osterhout has been helping promote the event, as well as organize opening and closing ceremonies for the day.

“We’re going to have Mitch Daniels and Superfly Deluxe, which is a party cover band,” Osterhout said. “They’re giving away Lollapalooza tickets and Blackhawks playoff tickets.

Tickets for the event can be purchased in advance at for $22 and $25 on the day of the pub crawl. Osterhout said about 600 tickets have sold.

“For only paying $22 , it’s really nothing,” Osterhout said. “You’re not spending that much for a good cause. I definitely think this could be a start of an annual Snuggie pub crawl.”

The event kicks off at noon on April 18 at Lion Head Pub, 2251 N. Lincoln Ave. For more information, visit