My brothers and I always looked forward to the annual Halloween parade and party in New Wilmington. We had won forst prize 2 years in a row, with a nice cash prize. We were a wedding party consisting of bride, groom, and flower firl. My older brother was the groom, who was dressed in black pants, white jacket, bow tie, top hat, and boutonniere. I wore my mother's satin wedding gown, which she had cut down to fit me, and a veil for my head, and I carried a bouquet of fresh flowers. My younger brother wore a flower girl's dress that I had worn in a real wedding when I was six-years-old and a fancy head covering, and he also carried a small bouquet of fresh flowers.
My older brother and I thought the parade was such fun, but my younger brother, Gerald, was not a happy camper as he had to dress up as a girl. He was teased by his siblings as we referred to him as Geralding. The prize money did soothe his pain.
After the parade was over, the fun began. New Wilmington is a small college town (Westminster College), and it seemed like the whole town turned out for the festivities. There were hay rides, apple-bobbing contests, and pie-eating contests. Music flowed through the area, and people danced in the streets. Picnic tables were set up, and hot dogs, cider, and candy apples were sold and enjoyed.
When I think back on this event, I realize what fun it was for both children and adults. There was no trick-or-treating and no vandalism. The joy of a small town celebration!