'Hunky Santa' greets shoppers at SouthPark Mall in Strongsville on Black Friday

STRONGSVILLE, Ohio - "Hunky Santa" was a huge hit with Black Friday shoppers, especially with the young crowd at SouthPark mall in Strongsville.

The "Hunky Santa" is Ryan Williams, a 26-year-old personal trainer at Empowering Punch inside the mall. 

From midnight until 2 a.m., Williams stood shirtless in the center of the mall, wearing Santa hat and pants with suspenders, flexing his muscles and taking pictures with the ladies.

Mall marketing director, Andy Selesnik said he saw a mall in California had a "Hunky Santa" and thought the idea might work at SouthPark.

"We started brainstorming for ideas for Black Friday and we thought how fun would this be?" said Selesnik.

"This night is not a night for little kids. It's a night for the ladies and the younger, more hip crowd."

It cost $5 to take a photo and $455 dollars was raised. The mall will contribute to make it an even $500. The money will go to the Red Cross for Hurricane Sandy relief.

Selesnik said last year, 85,000 people walked through the mall on Black Friday. Judging by the crowd size Friday morning, he expects the number to be higher this year.

SouthPark Mall opened at midnight Friday and will stay open until 10 p.m. Department store hours at the mall differ for Black Friday. For instance, JC Penney opens at 6 a.m. Friday and Dillard's opens at 8 a.m.

Print this article Back to Top


Related Stories