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Once in a lifetime you can have an adventure that lasts a lifetime…

Co-Written with Kari Floren - Based on the novel by Flora Doone

Teen-aged Alex Martin, hops a freight train in the 1950s, and finds Hobos, adventure and danger along the way to the crowning of The Hobo King.. 

CANDY KID AND THE HOBO KING, is a coming of age story about a 13 year old boy who learns that what a person shows on the outside is not who he is on the inside, for better and for worse. 

It’s June 1952 in Jacksonville, Florida, the last day of eighth grade for precocious 13 year old Alex Martin. He blows off his best friend to rush home because Uncle Bobby, his favorite person in the world is visiting. Over dinner Alex begs Uncle Bobby to take him with him for a summer adventure. Bobby tries to sneak out in the middle of the night but Alex hears him leave. He scribbles a note for his mother, catches up to Bobby at the train yard. A freight train pulls up, they hop on.


Inside the boxcar Alex sees a motley looking crew, but their laughter and obvious camaraderie set him instantly at ease. Everyone is headed to Britt, Iowa, for the crowning of the Hobo King. Bobby announces he’ll be running for the crown, flashes his smile, the hobos are all enthralled…all except one. John Rich, an older hobo, isn’t taken in by Bobby’s act.


Everybody gets off in Montgomery, John leads them through the woods to a camp, pointing out to Alex the hobo signs carved into the trees which show the way. As they reach the clearing, police charge in a frightening show of force to clear the camp. Bobby takes off to save his own skin, John pulls Alex to safety. Alex begins to realize his Uncle is a phony, resolves to not let Bobby become Hobo King.


Alex convinces John to run against Bobby, John is trustworthy, compassionate and brave, everything Alex misses in his Father. As they raise money to finance his campaign, John introduces Alex to Hobos from all walks of life, but the most interesting to Alex is Jojo, a 16 year old girl, who enthusiastically jumps on the “John Rich for Hobo King” bandwagon.  


They reach Britt, Iowa the day before the election. Bobby is furious to find his nephew campaigning against him. The voting begins, Alex is calming John’s nerves when Bobby appears, enraged. Bobby attacks John, pulls a knife and stabs him, he dies in Alex’s arms. Alex turns his Uncle in, Bobby is hauled off as he was about to accept his crown.


After promising to meet Jojo next summer, Alex returns home and does his chores with a whole new attitude. His best friend rides by, Alex flags him down, eager to tell him about his summer adventure…more importantly to show him he’s ready to be a better friend, it’s the Hobo Code of the Road***.


***“You help somebody who needs some help. If somebody don't have food or water, you share. Never leave your home a mess when you go. Leave some wood, food or a razor for the next guy. Don't ask too many questions...mind your own business.”


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