Nov 2, 2010
The Clown and the Landlord
Yesterday's Morning Call had an article by Dan Hartzell on Sunday's Halloween Parade. Dan wrote "Last minute financial donations from community activists saved the 2005 parade..." Hartzell goes on to write about the candidates present and the weather conditions, but who were the community activists? He then writes "City Parks and Recreation Director Greg Weitzel said the parade is no longer under threat of extinction- a good thing, since the event dates to 1905 and could be the oldest Halloween parade in the country." But who were the community activists? As a boy growing up in the 50's, the Halloween Parade was one of the biggest events of the year. My family would watch from around 15th and Hamilton, avoiding the packed crowds further down in the teeming shopping area. I remember Hopalong Cassidy riding his horse in the parade. In 2006, another TV icon from that era, cowgirl Sally Starr, participated in the parade at age 83. I don't know how many people in 2006 had any idea who Sally Starr was? Now in 2010, not only is Sally Starr forgotten, so are the community activists who saved the Oldest Halloween Parade in America(Inc.)*. Saving the parade was organized by Everett Bickford, aka Apples the Clown, and Heidi Unterberg. The parade was able to occur because of a donation from John Chapkovich, at the time a 23 year old landlord. Thanks Everett, thanks Heidi, thanks John, for keeping a 105 year old tradition going.
*Oldest Halloween Parade in America Inc. is copyrighted by Everett Bickford