, Newburyport, MA

May 6, 2014

Astonishing turnout for Easter Hat Parade

Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

The gift of beautiful, sunny weather on Easter Sunday certainly had something to do with the astonishing turnout for what attendees said they expected to be the “first annual” Newburyport Easter Hat Parade on Inn Street. All earned bragging rights for attending the very first parade.

The more than 100 people of all ages who wandered down to Inn Street to “see and be seen” in their hats — and those who came just to see them — owe thanks to The Daily News for its article the previous Thursday, which raised awareness and contributed to the attendance.

Special appreciation is due to features editor Ann Reily and photographer Bryan Eaton for a terrific pre-event story. And while we’re thanking the Daily News, hats off to Jim Vaiknoras, who spent a large part of his Sunday afternoon chronicling the parade for a fabulous video that can be viewed on the Newburyport News website.

The “friends of the Newburyport Easter Hat Parade,” the little group of locals who cooked up this idea to celebrate spring as an almost-spontaneous community gathering, wish to thank Janet Sutherland of SutherlandDorsey, who designed the poster pro bono; Zip Type for poster printing; and the Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank for underwriting the signs.

Thanks also go to the Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce, The Screening Room and Beach Plum Too for the generous prizes. Then to the judges: Jay Williamson, curator of the Historical Society of Old Newbury, Esther Sayer of the Inn Street Barbershop and Sharon Currier of Currier Designs.

Finally, we want to single out everyone whose imagination was caught by the idea of creating a hat, and threw caution to the wind about wearing it in very full public view, especially the prize winners: most dapper, John Burciaga; FUNniest, LindaLu Burciaga; most elegant, Edith Heyck; best kid’s design, 11-year-old Natalia Andino; most creative, Tamisha Johnson.

We hope to see you — and your friends and neighbors — next year on Easter Sunday, April 5, 2015.

Friends of the Newburyport Easter Hat Parade:

Pat Skibbee and Robin Lawson, co-chairs; Ann Simpson, Cynta Quinn, Lynn Kettleson, Sharon Currier