Creativity is the name of the game at Selbyville Halloween Parade. People can have a frightfully good time showing off their costumes, cars and floats on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 7 p.m.
The parade is co-sponsored by the Fenwick Island Lions Club and the Town of Selbyville.
“Think outside the box!” said Lions President Linda St. Clair. “There’ll be some great prizes for the winners.”
Last year, she said, she saw a family pulling a little boy in a wagon. But the wagon was shaped like a boat, and he was the captain.
Children and families can enter the parade’s costume contest by meeting at 6 p.m. at the Salem United Methodist Church parking lot. Prizes will be awarded in six age groups (ages 1-4, grades K-1, grades 2-4, grades 5-6, grades 7 and up, plus family groups). Children can either enter the age-group or family competition, but not both.
Pre-registration is not required to participate in the costume contest. After the contest, the participants will march in the main parade.
St. Clair said some people go all-out to design fun floats and group costumes, such as ghostly and zombie dance troupes or the pickup trucks transformed into eerie graveyards.
“It’s a surprise. Some of the floats are surprises to even the people that have planned the parade, because its changes on a yearly basis,” St. Clair said.
The best viewpoint for the parade route, she suggested, is along Church Street, from Town Hall to the former PNC Bank, where the judging and main performances occur.
The parade brings all the classic parade fare to Church Street: local high school bands bringing their A-game, plus floats, gymnasts, candidates for public office, firetrucks, scout troops, pageant winners, farm equipment, classic cars and much more.
Food will again be available at the former PNC bank parking lot, at the corner of Church and Main. Each year, local groups, such as the Lions and Selbyville Volunteer Fire Company, sell food to parade-goers, including hotdogs, hamburgers and oyster sandwiches.
People can also enter the Lions’ 50/50 drawing. Last year’s winner took home $1,700. Those participating in the 50/50 need not be present to win.
“They should come out for family fun and enjoy some food while they’re there,” St. Clair said.
Costume and parade judging will be done by two town council members and the town manager.
“The Fenwick Island Lions Club would like to thank the Town of Selbyville and their staff,” St. Clair said. “This is one of our major community events. The mission of the Lions Club is to serve. Any fundraising money we make goes back into the community.”
What’s the best part?
“The community camaraderie,” said St. Clair. “The children get to see some of their friends that night instead of doing homework. … I think the kids enjoy looking at all the different costumes and the bands and the floats.”
While its exact age is unclear, St. Clair estimated that the parade could be approaching 70 years old at this point. Anecdotally, there’s a woman in her 80s who said she remembers being in the parade fire truck at age 7. St. Clair couldn’t confirm that, but there’s no question, she said, that “this parade is a tradition for this town.”
Even beyond the costume contest, people can still take part in the 2018 parade. The registration deadline was extended from Oct. 18 to Oct. 22 for classic cars, marching units, businesses, adult and youth clubs, and more. Call (301) 655-0742 to register a float or marching unit for the parade.
Downtown streets will close at 5 p.m. Handicapped-accessible parking will be available in the town lot behind the Georgia House restaurant on Main Street.
The annual parade is themed “Sight Night,” and as they do each year, the Lions Club will collect old pairs of eyeglasses, which will ultimately be donated to people in need in developing countries. Lions Clubs are best known for their sight and vision work, providing glasses to those in need, vision tests for children, funds for vision research and more.
For more parade information, visit www.townofselbyville.com.
By Laura Walter