Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Costumed students honour longtime costumed crossing guard

  • Print

Bob Sweet, 66, will retire next week after 11 years as an adult crossing guard for the K-8 school. Sweet started wearing costumes to stand out in the crowd to alert motorists children were crossing the road but it became part of his regular routine as the students absolutely adored him for it.

How sweet it is to have a crossing guard like Bob.

Known for wearing costumes each day as he safely guides children across the street, Bob Sweet was surprised Wednesday morning when he was joined in costume by about a dozen Grade 8 students from St. Ignatius School and their teacher, Pat Barnson.

Sweet wore a kilt and leather jacket as he escorted kids dressed as a milk jug, whoopie cushion, ghost, Darth Vader, monkey, Goofy and vampire at the corner of Corydon Avenue and Harrow Street.

The days of another school year are winding down, and so is his career.

Sweet, 66, will retire next week after 11 years as an adult crossing guard for the kindergarten-to-Grade 8 school.

Though his last official day is the last day of school, June 28, the kids decided to show their appreciation as a group on Wednesday.

"This was a bit of a shock (to see the kids in costumes), but it sure is nice," said Sweet, who was clearly astounded when the students walked up in a group wearing their costumes. "My plan was to make everybody smile, make everybody happy."

A school assembly was held Wednesday morning during which Sweet and principal Glen Palahicky, who has transferred to Morden, were lauded with songs, poems and stories by students.

"Bob's creativity just brings a sense of joy and welcoming for the kids," said Palahicky, who will be the vice-principal at âcole Morden Middle School. "He keeps them safe and it's our own little Disney World here. When the kids get to see those characters (costumes) they can relate to, it just puts them in a good headspace for the rest of the day here at school for learning."

Sweet started wearing costumes as another way to stand out in the crowd and alert motorists that children are crossing the road, but it immediately became part of his regular routine as the students adored him for it.

"It's put a smile on our faces every day," said Chas Meadows, 14. "Maybe we're coming to school kind of grumpy, but when we see Mr. Sweet, you just start smiling because he's such a funny, happy guy. Our group is lucky; we had him here since we were in kindergarten."

Alice Hamilton, 13, had to raise her voice to be heard amid honks from cars showing their appreciation as they passed the costumed crew.

"It's nice to see him every morning that I'm walking to school, and it's been fun to be able to say I'm from the school where the crossing guard dresses up. Lots of people have heard about him," Alice said.

Barnson, wearing a leopard costume, said the fact her middle-school students got up extra early showed how much Sweet means to them.

"They thought it would be cool to dress up in solidarity with him one morning. It was a Grade 8 decision to do this, and I think it's great."

Sweet won't be retiring from the costume-wearing business, as he has another gig lined up.

"Laughter Without Borders," he said, indicating the T-shirt he was wearing under his leather jacket. "I'll be clowning around."

He'll be showing up at events as a mascot or wearing costumes for kids' birthday parties.

ashley.prest@freepress.mb.ca

 

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 20, 2013 B1

History

Updated on Thursday, June 20, 2013 at 5:49 AM CDT: Replaces photos, adds slideshow

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Jets defencemen ready to face adversity

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • JJOE.BRYKSA@FREEPRESS.MB.CA Local-Postcard  Day-Horror frost and fog created a most beautiful setting at Assiniboine Park Thursday morning in WInnipeg- Enviroent Canada says the fog will lifet this morning and will see a high of -7C-  JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS- Feb 18, 2010
  • Challenges of Life- Goose Goslings jump over railway tracks to catch up to their parents at the Canadian Pacific Railway terminalon Keewatin St in Winnipeg Thursday morning. The young goslings seem to normally hatch in the truck yard a few weeks before others in town- Standup photo- ( Day 4 of Bryksa’s 30 day goose project) - Apr 30, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Now that former cabinet minister Theresa Oswald has entered the NDP leadership race, do you believe the "gang of five" rebel ministers were right to publicly criticize Premier Greg Selinger's leadership?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google