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June 4, 2008 > Chaplin days are back

Chaplin days are back

By Mona Shah

The strut, the cane, the bowler, the mustache ... they'll all be back this weekend in honor of Niles' most famous and beloved son. The Niles Main Street Association and Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum invite you to join them June 7 and 8 in a celebration of the silent film icon Charlie Chaplin in historic downtown Niles. Lots of fun activities are planned for the weekend including "penny carnival games" and plenty of "Charlies" roaming the streets.

Come dressed like Charlie Chaplin to compete for your chance to win a prize. Don't look like Charlie? No problem, just dress like any movie star to compete. A look-alike contest will be held both days; participants will meet at the Essanay Silent Film Museum located at 37417 Niles Boulevard at 2:30 p.m.

Did you know that Chaplin starred in several short films in Niles back in 1915? Here is a chance to see them at the Niles Esannay Film Museum's Edison Theater, 37417 Niles Blvd. Tickets are 50 cents (suggested donation); popcorn and snacks will be available. The proposed schedule includes: 11 a.m. - In the Park (filmed in Golden Gate Park); 12 p.m. - A Night Out (filmed in Oakland and Niles); 1 p.m. - The Tramp (filmed in Niles Canyon and Essanay Studio Lot); 2 p.m. - A Jitney Elopement (filmed at the Great Highway, Golden Gate Park and Niles); 3 p.m. - The Champion (filmed at Essanay Studio Lot in Niles).

Don't miss a special Saturday night showing of "The Kid," one of Chaplin's most famous films. It features a fetching child actor named Jackie Coogan. This film was called "six reels of joy" in 1921 and that comment is still appropriate today. Piano background will be provided by pianist Bruce Loeb. Tickets (suggested donation, $5) will be on sale from noon to 4 p.m. - seating is very limited.

Enjoy the charming historic setting and support Old Town Niles. Find a unique treasure in one of over 40 stores, have a laugh with a Charlie impersonator, catch an old movie, and treat yourself to a slice of hometown Americana.

For more information call (510) 742-9868 or visit Information about the silent film museum can be found by calling (510) 494-1411 or visit

Charlie Chaplin Days
Saturday, June 7 and Sunday, June 8
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Old Town Niles, Fremont

Essanay Film Museum
37417 Niles Blvd., Fremont

(510) 742-9868

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