Santas get physical at World Santa Claus Congress

Men and women dressed as Santa Klaus take part in a street parade in the famous pedestrian street Stroeget, during the World Santa Claus Congress, in central Copenhagen on Tuesday, July 19, 2011. The World Santa Claus Congress has taken place in the Dyrehavsbakken amusement park (usually shortened as Bakken) north of Copenhagen in Denmark since 1957. Every summer Bakken is invaded by Santas from around the world who gather to spread good Christmas cheer. (AP Photo/Polfoto, Kristian Linnemann)

July 21, 2011 12:48:24 PM PDT
The Olympics have pentathlons -- and so does the World Santa Congress, sort of. Santas from all over the world lugged their overweight waistlines to this year's 54th World Santa Claus Congress, throwing sacks of presents and firing canon balls in a new physical fitness contest.

The five-discipline event is the latest addition to the three-day conference at the world's oldest amusement park: Bakken, just outside the Danish capital of Copenhagen.

Two teams of St. Nicks -- one from Denmark and the other from the United States, Sweden, Russia, Germany and other countries -- competed Wednesday for the coveted trophy of Best Santa Team.

The Danish Santas won.

Aside from throwing presents, they also had to master a Christmas obstacle course, ride bumper cars and compete in a horse race game.