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There’s a good reason why I chose to feature that STAR WARS “Darth Vader” Halloween Costume in the header for this article. Long before The Rock Father… I believe I wore that very costume three years in a row – sometimes as an alternate (one costume for trick-or-treating, a different for school, etc.) – though I had Luke Skywalker’s green RETURN OF THE JEDI lightsaber instead of the proper red one.

In second grade, some obnoxious kid tore my cape while walking through the gymnasium at Beacon Hill Elementary School in Chicago Heights, Illinois on a costume walk. A couple years later, that same kid moved into the house across the street from me in Park Forest, Illinois. His name was Jeff, and he became a friend for several years to follow. Oddly enough, he introduced himself to me as ”the kid that tore your Darth Vader cape at school.” Personal anecdotes aside, 1979 looks like it was a great year for costumes at the local Woolworth and Woolco stores.

The BEN COOPER Halloween Costumes are out in-force, with STAR WARS, MARVEL & DC Superheroes, and some other assorted ghouls in there – all for ”rock bottom prices” of only $2.38-$4.17. Check out the commercial below and see if you spot anything you once roamed the neighborhood in.

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Come to think of it, we had a Woolco store in nearby Matteson, Illinois growing up. That place is long gone at this point. I wonder if my daughters will look back on Halloween 30 years from now and find that many of the stores we have in 2012 are long gone by 2042? 

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