Eddie and Grace LeMay ran one of the best carnival cookhouse concessions of the 1920s. One fall day the couple stopped their trailer by the Alafia River, in a sleepy Florida town called Gibsonton, for what they thought would be an hour’s rest. Eddie cast a fishing line in the water and immediately caught several fish for dinner that night. Moments later a group of locals came walking toward the trailer and the couple figured this would be the end of their stay. But the townspeople greeted them warmly and ever since then, Gibsonton, known to the locals as “Gibtown,” has been a gathering place for fellow show people, now spanning four generations. Today one can still glimpse a town where the neighbors are marvels – meet Melvin Burkhart who retired to Florida like many other senior citizens, but will still nail a six- inch spike into his head for anyone who asks politely; Jeanie Tomaini the “half-girl” who married Al, an 8 foot 4 inch giant; the Parnells, an octogenarian couple who have produced various performing monkey acts for over 40 years. During the off-season, a walk through Gibsonton reveals ferris wheels, vividly painted show fronts and an occasional snoozing elephant or llama, evoking memories of carnival days gone by. The award-winning documentary GIBTOWN chronicles the unique town of Gibsonton, Florida and its remarkable inhabitants, and touches upon the common chords of human experience that bind all communities together. The film focuses on intimate personal stories of its aging subjects and captures many of their last documented performances and interviews, preserving this quickly fading facet of American culture for generations to come. 15th Year Anniversary Edition and digital debut.
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Cast & Crew
- Decoy Films
- © 2000 Decoy Film Properties, Inc.
- English (Stereo)
- Closed captions refer to subtitles in the available language with addition of relevant nondialogue information.