Portsmouth ended October with its seasonal roar Thursday night and it was as if the Halloween muses tipped their heads to let their visions and stories spill out. The weather behaved and was eerily balmy (though windy) with nary a drop of rain to be found. The downtown became a wondrous frontier to be explored with music around every bend. The streets were full of witches and monsters and other strange creatures. The sidewalks bulged with viewers, many of whom felt a fluttering of excitement typically reserved for opening presents. They strained their necks to see, and everything was so much that it burst beyond the frame of vision. The night was pierced with shouts of delight, admiration and surprise. There was much clapping and laughter.
To the participants, viewers, volunteers and supporters of The Portsmouth Halloween Parade, we say
Underneath the vast compass of you all, our spirit as a community that can create and celebrate together was renewed.
Marching into its 26th year, the Portsmouth Halloween Parade is a grassroots, all-inclusive celebration of community, creativity and free expression that walks, stalks, dances, trumpets and drums its way through downtown Portsmouth each year on
October 31st at 7 p.m.
Everyone is invited to dress up, gather at Pierce Island by Prescott Park, and march. No sign-up required. The Parade is NOT a city-sponsored event. It is entirely funded and put on by the community, which rallies a number of benefits to raise funds to cover expenses of insurance, permits and police escort. Hundreds march in costume, thousands cheer from the sidelines, it’s always a spectacle from either side of the curb.