When the 10 Mummers fancy brigades marched on Olde New Jersey Avenue for the 21st year on Saturday, June 13, routing them on their colorful journey was a man who has found a way to be a Mummer from January to December even when it snows and the temperature dips uncomfortably.
Joe “Joe Q” Quattrone, the entertainment coordinator for the city of North Wildwood, has been a Mummer for 61 years, starting as a 13 year old when he showed up in South Philadelphia with his guitar. No good, said a representative of the Fralinger String Band. He had nothing against guitars, the official told Quattrone, but they are too quiet for string bands. Try a banjo instead. They’re from the same family as the guitar and make happy and louder joyous music that encourages the Mummers strut.
So Quattrone switched instruments and a new and long standing relationship was born.