By Mike LAWLER
About 40 people brought lawn chairs and blankets to a free outdoor movie in Dunsmore Park last Friday night. The 1966 Don Knotts comedy “The Ghost and Mr. Chicken” was shown on the city’s large inflatable movie screen as a joint venture between Glendale Parks and Recreation and the Historical Society of the Crescenta Valley.
This comedy classic was one of a series of Don Knotts comedies made in the late ’60s, after his successful run as Barney Fife on the Andy Griffith Show. The score of the film with a “spooky organ” dominated musical theme was penned by the recently deceased Vic Muzzy. Muzzy was a prolific TV and movie song track composer who is best remembered for the theme songs to the Addams Family and Green Acres.
The highlight of the evening though was the opening of the show when Glendale City Councilman John Drayman made an appearance to tell an absolutely true Montrose ghost story that he had just made up. After entertaining the crowd with a Halloween- themed song and poetry, he launched into a gory and terrifying ghost story that was set in the Montrose Shopping Park. Centered on the alley known as Montrose Lane that runs parallel to the north of Honolulu Avenue, it recounts a tale of murder and beyond-the-grave revenge. Drayman went on to let the audience know that just after 3 a.m. on Halloween a dangerous ghost appears in the alley at the lower edge of the city parking lot behind the stores in Montrose and that is why the city restricts parking in that lot between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. – for the safety of Glendale residents!