Friday October 12, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- Today is the "drop dead" deadline for local ghouls, goblins and other things that go bump in the night to enter the Pittsfield Halloween Parade in two weeks.

Those individuals, along with community groups, schools and others wanting to march down Tyler Street, should submit their application forms to the Department of Community Development at City Hall by 4 p.m. Forms are available at the Community Development Office or online at cityofpittsfield.org, city officials said.

The parade will step off Friday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m., from the corner of Tyler and Smith streets and end at Woodlawn Avenue.

The original sign-up deadline was last Friday, but was extended in hopes of scaring up more entrants, according to Rebecca Tefft, the city's recreational activities coordinator.

"We wanted to give everyone in the community a chance to participate," Tefft said.

The parade lineup currently consists of 21 units, including four floats, marching bands from Pittsfield, Taconic and Drury high schools, five of the eight Pittsfield elementary schools, and a number of community-based and business organizations, Tefft noted.

Thomas N. Bowler will be the grand marshal, continuing a long-standing tradition of the Berkshire County sheriff leading the parade. Greylock Federal Credit Union is the main sponsor for the event.

Traditionally a North Street event, the Halloween parade was moved to Tyler Street last year -- on a trial basis -- at the request of the Tyler Street Business Group and Ward 1 Councilor Christine Yon and former city councilor Peter T. White in an effort to showcase the commercial district.

The move received such rave reviews from some Tyler Street merchants, marchers and parade-goers, city officials agreed, for now, to keep the event on Tyler.

"Anything to bring attention to our area is great," said Diane Marcella, chairwoman of the Tyler Street Business Group.

"I am just happy there will be new pavement down on Tyler Street," she said. Marcella was referring to the resurfacing the busy thoroughfare that city public works officials expect to be completed by Tuesday.

To reach Dick Lindsay:
rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6233.
On Twitter: @BE_DLindsay.