ALTON - For Cole Kribs, the Alton Halloween Parade isn’t just fun; it’s business.
Every year, Cole and his family set up shop outside Town Club Bar and Grill, located at 2400 E. Broadway in Alton, and sell hot chocolate to the parade participants as they wait for the parade to start. The bar is owned by Cole’s father, Mark Kribs, and they are happy to invite people in for a few minutes of warmth and a hot drink.
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“It’s cold tonight,” Cole noted as he waited for the parade to start on Oct. 31, 2023. “I would think that would help.”
It’s also a tradition. Cole and his brother have spent every Halloween Parade at the bar with their parents. The parade participants usually line up along Broadway, so they always get a sneak peak of the floats and bands before the parade officially starts. While they decided to stick to hot chocolate this year, they usually have crock pots full of hot chocolate and hotdogs to boost spirits and strengths before the parade starts its 1.8-mile route through downtown Alton.
With temperatures in the mid-30s this year, people were perhaps more excited to see the Town Club than they were to watch the floats. Cole was ready as soon as participants arrived at their lineup spots. As he filled cups of hot chocolate and directed people inside the Town Club to warm up, he reflected on the Alton tradition that means so much to his family.
“We’ve been doing it a long time. Since we were kids, we just sat out here and sold hot chocolate and hotdogs,” he said. “It’s cold, but yeah, it’s fun.”
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