December 12, 2008
CHECK ALMOST any Philadelphia tourist brochure and you'll see a Mummer in New Year's sequins and feathers. Love 'em or hate 'em - and at times, Philadelphians do both - the Mummers are an instantly recognizable symbol of the city. So it makes no kind of sense that Philadelphia would imperil one of its signature attractions by forcing it out of Center City. Just three weeks before the Mummers are scheduled to step onto Broad Street, city government is insisting that they sign a contract obligating them to cover any expenses for the parade that exceed $300,000 in police overtime and sanitation.
January 4, 1989
There's a lot of finger-pointing and second-guessing going on regarding the debacle that this year's Mummers Parade became. None of it is terribly important because the particular circumstances that caused the parade to proceed in iffy weather may never come up again. This latest round of post-parade recriminations is, in fact, diverting attention from the essential truth that even if the weather had been perfect, there would still have been widespread dissatisfaction over this cherished event that gets less and less satisfying with each passing year.
January 7, 2003
EDDIE HALL IS the one hero to emerge from the international tempest caused last week by L'Affaire Slick Duck. Hall is the owner and captain of the Purul Comic Club, one of five "mother clubs" that each year hand out Mummers badges to motley groups of marchers who want to parade their opinions and jokes by City Hall. As in years past, the Slick Ducks Comic Brigade, a club know for its last-minute productions of bad-taste themes, was to march with Purul. Political satire is a big part of the Mummers: This year, for example, at least one group staged a skit that questioned the pending Iraq war and more than one group got inspiration from Trent Lott (As in "Trent Lott's Kwanzaa Unity Tour.
December 31, 1992 |
There is plenty of room for two string bands in Bucks County, says Jay Walter, as long as people know that the Greater Bucks County String Band was here first. "People lose sight of that, for some strange reason," said Walter, music director of the Greater Bucks string band, which was founded in 1947 and is based in Levittown. Its rival, the Uptown String Band, has been in Bucks County since 1990 and is based in Hulmeville. Both Bucks County string bands will march in the annual Mummers Parade in Philadelphia tomorrow.
December 30, 2011
THE ORDER of march for the Fancy Brigades at the 2012 Mummers Parade. The 10 brigades enter the parade route at Oregon Avenue and march to Washington Avenue, where they board buses that take them to be judged at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. 1. Downtowners Fancy Brigade Captain: Frankie DeVito Theme: Pirates . . . Dead or Alive: The Curse of Skull Island Hoist the sails, fasten the jib and be prepared to come about. Blackbeard's ship, "Queen Anne's Revenge," is torn apart in a vicious storm.
January 2, 2010 |
A herd of winged pigs wielded tiny white umbrellas. A helmeted Norse warrior pranced down the street, a 75-pound contraption of steel tubes and bright feathers strapped to his back. A squadron of saxophonists marched in formation, with toilet plungers jutting above their heads. Where else but Broad Street in Philadelphia on New Year's Day? The rain disappeared just in time for the annual Mummers Parade yesterday, providing an extra-sunny sparkle to row upon row of sequined costumes.
December 29, 2008 |
IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL Independence Day down in Wildwood Crest, Anthony Celenza's favorite place in the world, yet the wide beaches at the Crest would have to be without him that day. Celenza, you see, is the captain of the Ferko String Band, and on July Fourth, Ferko can drum up - or glockenspiel up, perhaps - a few thousand dollars by playing patriotic parades. Celenza and his players went from the morning main-street parade hometown of Haddonfield to nearby Audubon, then over to Evesham Township and then, later, into the city to do the Welcome America parade.
December 30, 1988 |
To Philadelphians - long accustomed, if not immune, to the annual strut up Broad Street - the Mummers Parade is a phenomenon that simply goes with the season. But try explaining the Mummers, in all their primped and plumed glory, to someone from out of town. "Do they, like, hum?" a friend in Los Angeles asked recently. Another, in Dallas, was more to the point. "If a parade don't lead up to either a department store or a football game, then what's the point?" he asked, with Texas sensibility.
January 27, 1992 |
After all the blood that's been let in the past few months, I hesitate to add my two cents, but after trying to watch the Mummers Parade "live" for the last few years, my wife and I are throwing in the towel until something drastic is done to the format. This potentially glorious event is so badly bungled by the people who administer it that we are going to join the masses who are avoiding the parade in earnest these days. Turn on the television and let it fill the background on New Year's Day!
December 30, 2011
* 2012 MUMMERS PARADE. Pre-parade coverage begins at 9 a.m. Sunday, followed by live coverage of the parade. From 8 to 10 p.m. the Fancy Brigade Finale show airs in a tape-delayed broadcast from the Pennsylvania Convention Center. WPHL17. THE MUMMERS Parade is more than a New Year's tradition to Steve Highsmith. Much more. The longtime anchor for PHL17's parade broadcast will spend at least eight hours on the air Sunday - assuming the weather cooperates and things go off as scheduled - but he's been prepping for this day for months.