Boy turns landmark into clever costume

Hunter Herbaugh
Thursday, November 5, 2020
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Local youth Charley Hopper dressed up as the GTA building for Halloween this year. Impressed with tall buildings, he said the tower is one of his favorite things in town. The costume was homemade with help from his mother, Amanda Hopper. Submitted photo

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Halloween is really fun, if for no other reason than that it allows everyone to dress up however they want and get to be whatever they want. Some people dress as monsters, other as their role models or even as superheroes. While dinosaurs and Spider-man are pretty common sights on Halloween night, a walking building might not be as common.

But that was the costume 10-year-old Charley Hopper proudly wore as he celebrated the night. Likely one of the most creative costumes of the evening, he became a miniature version of the GTA building, recognizable to most of the community as one of the most visible local landmarks. The costume was made by him and his mother, Amanda Hopper.

While most people just see the tower as another building in town, Charley sees it as his favorite thing about the community. His mother explained that she isn’t sure what it is that he likes about it so much, with Charley saying he isn’t so sure what it is that interests him either. Although, Charley noted he thought it was cool how tall the building is and how it seems to have a smaller building on top of it.

According to Amanda, Charley’s interest in the tower started about a year ago, but he has always had a fascination with tall buildings.

“It’s his favorite thing and every time we leave the house, he just wants to say ‘there it is, there’s the GTA building,’ and I asked him what he wanted to be for Halloween and I was not surprised when he said the GTA tower,” Amanda said.

Amanda explained that she and Charley worked on the costume for about a week, getting all the details in place. The difficult part, she said, was figuring out how to replicate the rounded sides of the building. They eventually got the idea to use pool noodles, cutting them and then gluing them to a box that they had cut to fit his body. The most important detail they had to get right, according to Charley, was the fence along the top of the first part of the building.

Seeing the finished product, Charley said he was happy with how it turned out. Throughout the night, Amanda said the costume received a lot of positive feed back, getting attention and smiles from everyone that saw it. Charley said his friends also enjoyed it, thinking it was a pretty cool look.

Now that Halloween is over, that doesn’t mean Charley is just getting rid of the costume that he and his mom worked so hard on. Amanda explained he has started using it more like a toy, meaning he’s probably going to be holding onto it for at least a little while longer.

Reach Hunter Herbaugh at rrreporter@