Mar 19, 2012

Allentown's New Parade Route


Yesterday I went to the beauty parlor. About five years ago my downtown barber retired, and I was forced to go to a unisex shop. She assured me she also cuts men's hair, but I have yet to see another one there, but I don't go that often. I'm not sure what she calls her shop or herself, but I use the terms I remember from my childhood; My mother would go to the hairdresser at the beauty parlor. My mother would also take me to the Halloween Parade on Hamilton Street. Parades started at the fairgrounds and ran down Hamilton Street. The Street would be lined with people all the way downtown watching the parade, and hawkers would sell balloons and treats. One of last ones I remember featured Hopalong Cassidy, movie cowboy star of the 1930's. They featured his movies on a weekly TV show in the 50's, so I was very surprised about how old he looked in person. Years later, I heard that they had to tie him to the saddle, so he wouldn't fall off his horse during the parade. In recent years they had Sally Star in a parade down Hamilton Street, also long past her prime, but the people who remember her were afraid to go downtown. Last year organizers of the St. Patrick's day parade started a new tradition in Allentown, taking the parade west, away from downtown. My hairdresser noted that parade would go by her old shop on the way to downtown, and now by her new shop, to get away from downtown. I know there is nothing racist about the organizers or the parade, but there might be something classist about the new parade route.

reprinted from March, 2009

photocredit: molovinsky

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

As a center city resident I support putting these affairs in the west side.
The less of this in the city, the better for all of us.
Waste of time and money.

Anonymous said...

Well with the robberies and dead bodies the past few days it seems like the riff-raff is moving to the west side!

michael molovinsky said...

the westend location can be justified by the pub-crawl that occurred for a week prior to the parade. furthermore, one bar is particularly Irish. however, years ago, having a parade anywhere besides Hamilton Street, would never have occurred.

Anonymous said...

It's a big diverse city. A little change is good. No one area should get all the traffic impact from all parades.

The important thing is having a good time and happy people.

Even NYC has different parade routes at times.

Anonymous said...

The new parade route makes a lot more sense from a parking perspective. Hundreds of children participate in the parade, so starting and ending the parade at the Fairgrounds allows parents to drop off and pick up their child at the same location, and if those parents want to stay and watch the parade there is lots more parking available for same. Back when the parade ended downtown there was always a fustercluck due to the lack of parking. The reason for changing the route probably had more to do with the decline of downtown than the lack of parking, but it's a nice side benefit. I was impressed by all the events in Allentown over the weekend related to St. Pat's, in spite of the City's many challenges.

Anonymous said...

Hooray for Team Allentown!

RS said...

Don't worry. Starting in 2013 they can stage the parades inside the arena. Hey the people that will go to the area have been told they don't have to go outside for any service so this is just another arena event.

AuH20 said...

Won't be long before Obama and his Chicago accalytes like Mayor Hockey Puck will outlaw any public parade honoring a Catholic Saint.

Anonymous said...

This is the fourth or fifth year the Parade was on the West End and it has gotten bigger and better every year! All organizations must constantly change and innovate or die. This was a great idea!

KC said...

There are still plenty of barbers in the area.