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Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
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Two kids dressed as Batman and Superman, respectively, watching parade
Two superheroes watching Anoka's Grand Day Parade. Photo: Tad Johnson, ABC Publications

Anoka, Minnesota: The Halloween Capital of the World

This week-long celebration was initiated in 1920 as an alternative to the down side of trick-or-treat. It has been held every year since except 1942 and 1943. The Grand Day Parade, attended by 45,000 people in 1999, includes a Mass Band, made up of bands from four high schools. Another featured event is the Gray Ghost 5K Run, inspired by sightings of local octogenarian runner Bill Andberg. The event is lighthearted, with most participants wearing their Halloween costumes. Numerous competitions include a pumpkin bake-off, best Halloween house decorations, and Miss Anoka. The event is documented in text, a videotape, photographs, and news clippings.

Originally submitted by: Bill Luther, Representative (6th District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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