London

Mystery man brings early Halloween to London

The mystery man dresses up like the clown from the popular Stephen King novel, It. He's been cropping up on street corners and in bushes around London's Summerside neighbourhood. Now, he and photographer Melissa Price are teaming up to take photos with Londoners for a fee.

Photographer Melissa Price has been capturing images of 'Pennywise'

London's Pennywise, a mystery man who refuses to be indentified, has been popping up in the city's Summerside neighbourhood. (Melissa Price/Brass Ring Imagery)

So who is London's Pennywise?

Here's what we know. He spends two hours dressing up in a puffy grey jumpsuit with an obnoxiously large ruffled collar. He paints his face white and wears a ratty red wig with a receding hairline. He wears white gloves and is often holding that ominous red balloon Stephen King fans will know from his novel, 'It.'

"It just happened on a whim, and it cheered people up in a time where the world is going crazy so I kept doing it," said the mystery man who spoke briefly on CBC's London Morning.

"The costume just got better and better," said the Halloween fanatic who in full costume stands more than 6 foot 3 inches tall, grinning and waving at passersby, occasionally handing out balloons. 

The mystery man began scaring Londoners earlier this month and along with a photographer is now taking photos with people for a fee. (Melissa Price/Brass Ring Imagery)

"The guy doesn't talk. He is silent," said photographer Melissa Price who contacted the clown after seeing his photos on social media in early October.

"That's Pennywise. He's in character and he does a fantastic job staying in character," she said.

Price admitted she is afraid of clowns herself, thanks to Tim Curry's rendition of Pennywise in the movie, 'It.'

"He knows it too. I've told him straight up; you are not allowed to come near me," she said. "It creeps me out looking at my own pictures that I've taken of him. The shots that I've done. I'm like that it's eerie."

The pair are now booking photography sessions for people who want a chance to appear in a photo with Pennywise.

"This has taken off a lot differently than I was expecting," she said. "I've got my phone blowing up left, right and centre with people wanting to book." 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rebecca Zandbergen

Host, London Morning

Rebecca Zandbergen is from Ottawa and has worked for CBC Radio across the country for more than 20 years, including stops in Iqaluit, Halifax, Windsor and Kelowna. Contact Rebecca at rebecca.zandbergen@cbc.ca

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