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This is one of the truly big events on the yearly Sierra Madre calendar (perhaps the biggest), and is happily attended by thousands of trick or treaters from throughout the San Gabriel Valley.
In the past there has always been a robust Sierra Madre Police Department presence on East Alegria for Halloween. This included things like officers on foot, lighting, patrol cars, traffic barriers and those all important portable toilets. However, according to a widely circulated email that made the rounds yesterday, this year could be a little bit different.
I was not completely certain about the original source of this email (it was forwarded to me by a friend), so I did a little searching and came up with the following unhappy news from the September 11 City Manager Report (link).
So how many people attend this event? Apparently quite a few. The following 2012 account comes our way from a blog called Sierra Madre Living (link).
You'd think something that attracts 10,000 people would be taken more seriously by the local authorities.
In the past that apparently was the case. The following year old account of this signature Sierra Madre Halloween event comes to us from the somewhat overlooked Sierra Madre News.net (link). I found this to be confusing because while the City Manager's Report suggests that this is an event put on by private residents and not City Hall, here SMN correspondent Bill Coburn notes the strong city participation this event enjoyed in 2014.
After all, 10,000 is a lot of folks, and as anyone who has spent some quality Halloween time there can tell you, this isn't just a local event. People from all over Los Angeles County attend. Many of them filled with the kinds youthful exuberance this holiday often brings.
If some of these festive folks were detect the lack of any official presence there, might they try and take advantage?
Perhaps some people in authority might want to rethink their decision a little before anything unfortunate happens. If the City of Sierra Madre can afford to spend a ridiculous $15,689.43 to pay for the Water Department's cell phone service (link), it should be also be able to come up with a few bucks and assign some already on duty cops to East Alegria this Halloween.