I did a quick google search on the Hollywood Christmas Parade this morning, and imagine my surprise when I came across this gem of a silent home movie. Behold: the 1965 Studio City Christmas Parade with more local flavor and classic celebrities than you could shake a stick at! (And yes, the parade still exists… but not this year.) More information about the clip after the jump.
In case you missed it, tonight was the safest night of the year to walk through Hollywood (feels like every cop in town is there) and the most annoying night of the year to try driving through it… the eve of the 3.5 mile long Hollywood Christmas Parade. Now officially known as the “Hollywood Santa Parade,” the event was originally known as the Santa Claus Lane Parade back in 1928 when the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce created it to promote local shopkeepers. According to legend, the inaugural parade featured only Santa Claus and the actress Jeanette Loff.* Although the parade has experienced its share of tough times, it grew dramatically over the years and for decades Santa was portrayed by honorary Mayor of Hollywood (the late Johnny Grant) up until he was too old for the duties. (more…)
KLOS morning show DJs Mark Thompson and Brian Phelps came West from Birmingham, Alabama in September 1987. Initially it was their endearing “fish out of water” shtick that really won over viewers… I actually remember laughing out loud while listening to their live Halloween morning broadcast from Bel Air, as they yelled “trick or treat” into the estate intercoms while dressed as ax murderers. (Yes, police were called.) At the time, they were definitely a refreshing and welcomed change from their competition.
As L.A. became their home, the pair become progressively more “Hollywood” and upon receiving a 1991 National Association of Broadcasters Marconi Award as “Air Personalities of the Year,” Mark & Brian were clearly a hot commodity. So much so that ABC Television, hoping to find a West Coast Howard Stern Show on their hands, offered to broadcast “Mark and Brian’s Day Before Thanksgiving Parade” for their fans.
The video above was taped eighteen years ago on November 27, 1991. In what is perhaps not a surprise move in retrospect, ABC chose not to make the parade an annual television event. Personally, I blame that electric blue jacket combo. Just… wow.
What: Big Parade LA 2009 – Walk a little, walk a lot… it’s up to you.
Where: First meets at Angel’s Flight Stairway, Downtown. Then moves… as parades are wont to do (they have an itinerary and will be twittering their progress so you can meet them along the way)
When: July 18 and July 19 – All you need to know can be found here.
Details: There is absulutely NO better way to get to know Los Angeles than to get out of your car and hit the pavement. I’ve been doing that a lot lately and it’s shocking all of the things you can discover. Rather walk in a group? Well, here’s your chance… join a big walking community this weekend for all or just a part of THE BIG PARADE, a 2-day, 40-mile, 135-stairway walk. You’re invited!
Kind of like The Great Los Angeles Walk on steroids, THE BIG PARADE is a group effort, and the brain-child of of local stair explorer, Dan Koeppel. Dan undertook a five-year Los Angeles stair mapping/walking project that began in 2003 with a 47-stairway route through Silver Lake and now he’s mapped out a grand two-day walking even through Los Angeles. “The parade will start at the famous Angel’s Flight Stairway Downtown, and finish with six stairways leading up from Beachwood Canyon to the Hollywood Sign. The walk will cover approximately 40 miles and 135 stairways, and will include a camp-out at the mid-point (legalities permitting), the famous Music Box Stairs – site of the Oscar-winning Laurel & Hardy film of the same name – in Silver Lake. It will take place July 18 and 19th, 2009.”
“A core group of five to eight walkers will be doing the entire event. But – as the name “Big Parade” implies – the true nature of the journey is community-based. In addition to passing dozens of landmarks, we will be joined by community members, both individuals and in groups, as we pass through the city’s most diverse neighborhoods. The walk is broken into specific segments so that walkers of all ages and levels of fitness can join us at specific times (of course, anyone is welcome to meet us at any point along the way – and all are invited to join us at the end to celebrate the walk.)”
Think it’s a dumb idea? Well, their FAQ has an answer for that:
Q – The Big Parade is stupid.
A – You might be right. But not having one would be even stupider.