One of the must-attend events of late fall is located in one of the smallest areas of Atlanta. Claiming flavor from New Orleans’s French Quarter and Manhattan’s Greenwich Village, Little 5 Points is well-known for being an eccentric and truly diverse neighborhood. But the area is more commonly known to Atlantans for its annual Halloween festival and parade.
The ninth annual Little 5 Points Halloween Celebration is a festival and parade located in the L5P community along Moreland and Euclid Avenues.
The festival kicked off at noon on Saturday along Davis Plaza and lasted until 10 p.m. The parade started at 4 p.m., but the crowd — ranging from families on an afternoon outing to the most dedicated aficionados donning intricate costumes — lined up along the parade route much earlier.
In many ways, the festival and parade were like others of their kind. People on the floats distributed candy and fliers, and various beverage and food vendors set up along the parade route. The event’s sponsor, Atlanta radio station Project 9-6-1, provided eclectic musical entertainment on a side street adjacent to the parade.
But the parade began with an oversized, eye-catching black sign with white and neon yellow letters that read, “Forsake your sin and follow the Lord Jesus Christ” on one side and, “Jesus will throw all sinners in the lake of fire” on the other.
The uncostumed group first appeared in the parade before the official line-up began, then passed through the parade about three more times, with one of the group’s members — a young boy — yelling into a megaphone messages of sin and repentance.
The group incited a range of reactions from the unexpecting crowd, including two male parade viewers — one of them in a bunny costume — taunting the group member carrying the damning sign, and another man in the crowd pouring beer on the group members.
Then the signature L5P Halloween Parade festivities began. From the gory to the adorable, from the mainstream pop culture references to the more obscure costumes, the procession entertained viewers young and old, drunk and sober.
From Euclid Avenue to Moreland Avenue, the L5P sidewalks were filled with residents and viewers, eager to see the creative floats, walking groups and in-street performances.
True to the eccentricity of L5P Halloween Parade participants, there were various eye-catching costumes and floats throughout the event — a group of The Dudes from “The Big Lebowski” riding bicycles; a Chinese dragon dance group; a carriage led by a skeletal black horse; and more.
The Seed and Feed Marching Abominable, an Atlanta-based community band, carried witches and skeletons all while playing fun ’60s tunes.
Planned Parenthood participants dressed as birds and bees with a sign that read: “Tell your kids about the birds and bees, so they won’t get stung.” Stomp and Stammer
magazine rocked out with AC/DC in school guys’ and girls’ attire reminiscent of band member Angus Young’s usual get-up.
The East Atlanta Kids Club, dressed head to toe as zombies, paid a tribute to the King of Pop as it showcased its smooth moves with its own performance of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
And of course, the Chamber of Horror zoomed by with chain saws and a truck with bloody limbs and torsos hanging from it.
“I thought it was interesting collaboration of fantasy and horror. The parade was grotesque, but it almost cushioned the descent into gore with the beginning floats which more much more playful. It introduced me to a different side of Atlanta,” Emory freshman and parade attendee Khaila Montgomery said.
The L5P Halloween Parade was indeed an event that celebrated the diversity and creativity of Atlanta’s population.
— Contact Michelle Ye Hee Lee and Britnee Love