Brace yourselves, Philly sports fans: this morning we’re adding another crazy anecdote to your mythology. Forget snowballs and batteries. Columnist Mike Sielski wants to remind you of the time Santa threw some punches at a Sixers game. Multiple Santas, actually. Trust me, you’re going to want the full story. It’s hard to follow that up, I’ll admit, but this morning we’re also digging into what a Princeton data broker is doing with data on over 1 million high school students.

— Aubrey Nagle (@aubsn,

The story of Eagles fans pelting Santa with snowballs in 1968 is too often trotted out as a symbol of Philadelphia sports fandom.

But one special night in 1984, Santa fought back. Nine Santas, actually. It’s been 35 years since costumed men got involved in a brawl with several Celtics fans during a game. Columnist Mike Sielski sat down with them to get the full story once and for all.

The 2019 Sixers, meanwhile, play the Hornets tonight before their next rematch with the Celtics Wednesday.

Last year, Vermont passed the nation’s first law governing the data mining industry. They now require data brokers to register with the state and disclose whether they posses data on minors.

A Princeton-based company told Vermont regulators it didn’t knowingly posses data on minors. Meanwhile, on its website, it advertised a mailing list of more than a million high school students for sale with names, addresses, high schools, and hobbies of students aged 14 to 17.

New Jersey authorities announced Monday the arrests of 12 men in what was termed a “criminal network” in Camden County allegedly trafficking in untraceable, build-it-yourself AR-15 assault rifles.

The Attorney General’s Office and New Jersey State Police said the investigation began as a probe of cocaine distribution centered in Lindenwold and broadened to include guns.

The men are the first to be arrested under a new state law criminalizing the use of “ghost guns” built from kits sold online.

What you need to know today

Through Your Eyes | #OurPhilly

Is that you, spring? 😍 Great flower spotting, @jeffphl.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

That’s Interesting


Bob Englehart, Middletown, CT
Bob Englehart, Middletown, CT

“Our previous research has found that, while white people are rarely asked questions like ‘What have you done to prevent this cancer of white extremism?’ non-Muslims in American and Europe readily blame Muslims for similar acts of violence by individual extremists.” — Dr. Emile Bruneau asks how can we stop anti-Muslim bias that blames an entire culture for individual acts?

  • The City of Philadelphia needs a centralized process for handling sexual misconduct claims, writes Philadelphia City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart.
  • New Zealand’s response to the massacre at two Christchurch mosques last week — their prime minister promised changes to its gun laws within days — puts America to shame, writes the Inquirer Editorial Board.

What we’re reading

Syphilis Skull (aka Syphilitic Caries) at the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, Monday March 18, 2019.
JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer
Syphilis Skull (aka Syphilitic Caries) at the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, Monday March 18, 2019.

Your Daily Dose of | Skulls

The Mutter Museum is known for its huge colon, Einstein’s brain, and a plaster cast of conjoined twins. But its less infamous items are every bit as visit-worthy.