Anoka, Minnesota

Anoka, Minnesota—“The Halloween Capital of the World.” Anoka claims to be the first U.S. city to put on Halloween celebrations to divert PRANKING. In 1920, George Green and Anoka civic leaders suggested the idea of a giant celebration; the Anoka Commercial Club and the Anoka Kiwanis Club both gave their full support to the idea, and a Halloween committee was organized to plan the event. That first year’s festivities included a PARADE, a BONFIRE, and a giveaway of treats to local children. The CELEBRATIONS have been held every year since (except 1942 and 1943, when they were cancelled because of World War II). Festivities now include a Miss Anoka Ambassador Scholarship Pageant, three parades (consisting of the “Light Up the Night” parade, in which all displays must be lit, the “Big Parade of the Little People,” an entire parade dedicated to school children, and the Grande Day Parade, which is the second largest parade in the midwest and is always held the last Saturday of October), treat giveaways, and a children’s PUMPKIN-carv ing contest. An estimated 45,000 spectators line up to view the Grande Day Parade.


The Halloween Encyclopedia Second Edition written by Lisa Morton © 2011 Lisa Morton. All rights reserved