Tags: city | bans | clowns | halloween

City Bans Clowns, Reverses Decision Amid Backlash

angry clown standing in front of brick wall
Oak Park, Michigan, banned clown costumes from a community event before reversing the decision amid public uproar. (Peter Verreussel/Dreamstime.com)

Wednesday, 24 October 2018 02:52 PM

The City of Oak Park, Michigan, banned clowns from its upcoming Halloween festivities, but the decision was reversed Tuesday amid backlash from the community.

Each year thousands gather to participate in the annual Boo Bash celebration, which encourages children to dress up in Halloween costumes, but this year marketing materials posted to Facebook stated that clown costumes were banned.

Residents criticized the decision and on Friday the city's recreation director Laurie Stasiak attempted to explain that the event was centered around children and that many clown costumes "have been given a very scary and evil look," according to the Oakland County Times.

"Many scary and horror movies are centered around these types of characters," Stasiak continued. "Many people have phobias and anxiety about clowns. It's because of this that we asked people not to dress up as clowns for this community event."

The ban did not last long. Four days later the city's manager, Erik Tungate, issued a statement noting that the ban had been lifted.

"Over the last few years, many parents gave direct feedback stating they were concerned their children would see clown costumes and relate it to scary movies that are targeted for an adult audience," Tungate said in a post to Facebook. "That said, the City will not ban people with clown costumes (or any other) from participating in the Boo Bash event, however, we are encouraging parents to use their best judgment given this is an event that caters to families and small children."

Clowns have been getting a bad rap over the years, thanks largely to pop culture and Stephen King's horror book and ensuing film adaption "It."

Last year the author fielded massive uproar from professional clowns who blamed him for putting them out of work but, as he explained, the lead character Pennywise was a science-fiction character, not a clown.

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The City of Oak Park, Michigan, banned clowns from its upcoming Halloween festivities, but the decision was reversed Tuesday amid backlash from the community.
city, bans, clowns, halloween
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2018-52-24
Wednesday, 24 October 2018 02:52 PM
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