Costumed Celebration, Pets on Parade

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG)  |  Story by Shaunna Boyd; Photos courtesy Citrus Heights Community Marching Band
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Kali, a 3-year-old Jack Russell/terrier mix, models a pumpkin costume that she could wear in the Howl ‘o Ween parade. Holding Kali is Marnie Musser, Sacramento SPCA Community Outreach Manager, while Jennifer Blaine, a CHCMB tuba player and dancer, checks out the costume. Blaine is the band member who suggested that SPCA have an Adoption Area at the Harvest Festival. Musser says that Kali “likes other dogs and may be good with a family cat with a slow introduction.”

CHCMB to Host Howl ‘o Ween Parade and Harvest Festival

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - Every October the Citrus Heights Community Marching Band (CHCMB) hosts a parade and Harvest Festival to celebrate Halloween in a unique way. Several thousand people attend the Howl ‘o Ween fundraising event each year.

The 7th annual Howl ‘o Ween will be held on Saturday, October 20 in Citrus Heights. The festivities will kick off with a parade starting at 9 a.m. The parade will follow Auburn Blvd. from Twin Oaks Ave. to Rusch Park, which is located at 7801 Auburn Blvd. Kathy Cook, Program Director of the CHCMB said, “There will be about 50 entries with more than 500 participants in the parade…So far, parade entries include eerie and fun floats, kids and adults with their pets in costumes, Keystone Cops, U.S. veterans, marching bands, and pageant queens in a special Mary Purvis memorial convoy.  The Citrus Heights Rotary Club is building a special haunted house float for Citrus Heights Council Members Jeff Slowey and Bret Daniels.”

The Freedom Motorcycle Hearse Service, a 1949 Gibson tractor, and several antique cars will also be featured in the Howl ‘o Ween parade.  A very special guest will be in attendance as the parade’s Grand Marshal: Santa Claus will follow the procession in a golf cart sled.

After the parade arrives at Rusch Park, the Harvest Festival will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; admission to the festival is free for all. Enjoy an array of entertainment, including live music and demonstrations, youth groups, clowns, and dancers.

Musical entertainment will include performances by Sacramento Capitolaires Barbershop Chorus, the Capital City Band, DJ Dave and the CHCMB Dancers, and the Citrus Heights Community Marching Band. Citrus Heights Kaia Fit, Sons of Golden State, Star War Characters, and Family Taekwondo Plus will provide demonstrations.

The festival will also feature craft and business exhibits, including Atlas Disposal, which is participating for the fourth time this year. Robin Stuhr, Atlas Disposal Controller, said “We get to promote our business while celebrating with a very special band, big and small kids, doggies, and music.”

The event is, of course, pet friendly and will feature several dog and pet business booths. Even if you don’t already have pets of your own, the event offers the opportunity to become a loving pet owner with an Adoption Area sponsored by the Sacramento SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals).

Bring the kids to see all the dogs in costumes, and be sure to check out the Kids Zone with games, prizes, and a bounce house for the little ones. Don’t miss the car show sponsored by the Nor Cal Cruisers Car Club and the Citrus Heights Police Department. At lunch you can visit the CHCMB food booth, which will be serving hot dogs and chili dogs. And Santa will be getting an early start on the holiday season by holding court from a special holiday chair and chatting with the kids in attendance.

For more information about the Howl ‘o Ween parade and Harvest Festival, contact Cook at (916) 725-0198 or at