The Septemberfest parade did not always wind its way down Summit Drive in Schaumburg. Once upon a time the parade route marched down Weathersfield Way and Springinsguth Road. Of course, even then in 1980, the parade was made up of
- Fire engines
- Eight drum & bugle corps
- Hundreds of children engaged in the various scouting groups
- Politicians throwing candy
- A resplendent Miss Septemberfest Queen riding majestically atop the Jaycees’ float
- The Elgin Shrine Cycle Patrol with their fast-moving motorcycles weaving their figure eights on the road
- And an elephant
Wait a minute. An elephant? You betcha. As part of the 1980 Septemberfest celebration, an elephant walked the streets of Schaumburg carrying Charlie O’Neil, a disc jockey at WMAQ radio, who acted as grand marshall.
It would be interesting to know how Mr. O’Neil was selected. Maybe there was a country theme because it was during this time that WMAQ had a country music format and Mr. O’Neil was one of their popular DJs.
What an exotic addition to the parade!
Photo is courtesy of Copley Record Newspapers. Found in Schaumburg’s 25th Anniversary publication. 1956-1981.
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library