‘Tis Tartan Day

April 11, 2015

As long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours, that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.

On April 6, 1320, Bernard of Kilwinning wrote a letter to the Pope, proclaiming Scotland as an independent, sovereign state. Bernard was then the head of Arbroath Abbey, a monastery along the coast of the North Sea, and the document, written in Latin and sealed by eight earls and about forty barons, became known as the Declaration of Arbroath.

More than six hundred and fifty years later, a group of New Yorkers chose the date of Bernard’s missive to celebrate their Scottish heritage. Their enthusiasm was contagious, and by 1998 the U.S. Senate recognized Scottish-Americans’ contributions to the nation by declaring April 6 as National Tartan Day.

The Scots-centric festivities have grown and become a yearly event, dubbed Tartan Week, which honors all things related to the land once known as Caledonia. The highlight of the week is the loud and colorful Tartan Day Parade.

In the first New York Tartan Day Parade, a small, loosely organized group marched across the Upper East Side, from the British Consulate to the United Nations, while clad in kilts and playing bagpipes.

Today the 17th annual New York Tartan Day Parade was held on Sixth Avenue. It featured thousands of bagpipers, marchers, dancers, dogs and representatives of organizations from all over the world who strode up the street, delighting all the Scots and “temporary, honorary Scots” who lined the route in Midtown Manhattan.

No Sixth Avenue bus today

Marchers taking a break

Shamrock tattoo

Ready to march

Marching and waving

Bearskin hat

Her first time marching

Temporary, honorary Scot

Carrying a staff

Waving the flag

Pipers chatting before the parade

Bagpipers practicing

Tartan Day Parade bus

Marcher meets officer

The Westie and Scottie Pack

Clan MacLare

Waving flags

Girls leading the pipers

Marching and piping

The Grand Marshal isn’t as interesting as his phone

Playing at 46th Street

West Point Cadet Corps

Seasoned marchers

Pipers and drummers

Best seat in town

Greenwich Pipe Band

Clan Chattan Confederation, Clan McBean, Clan Shaw

Happy marchers

Clan Kincaid

Marching trio

Scotland’s most famous citizen

It’s Nessie!

Clan Munro Association, Thailand

If it’s not Scottish, it’s crap

American Scottish Foundation

Folk dancers

NYC Police Band

University of Strathcylde

Marchers laughing

Tri-County Pipe Band

Dog in a kilt

Atlantic Watch Pipes & Drums

Group wearing thistle t-shirts

Sauntering on the sidewalk after the parade

The National Archives of Scotland: The Declaration of Arbroath
Historic Environment Scotland: Arbroath Abbey
Scotland’s National Tourist Board: Arbroath Abbey
Undiscovered Scotland Bernard of Kilwining
New York Tartan Day Parade
NYC Tartan Week
St. Andrew’s Society of the State of New York
New York Caledonian Club
American-Scottish Foundation

Mermaids on Parade

June 19, 2010

This year’s Mermaid Parade was bigger than ever, possibly because this Coney Island institution featured iconic New York musicians Lou Reed as King Neptune and his wife, Laurie Anderson, as Queen Mermaid.

The sidewalks, fire escapes and rooftops were packed with viewers as hundreds, perhaps thousands of marchers, strollers and riders paraded along Surf Avenue. When they reached the police barriers at Astroland, they turned and began the parade again, this time passing through a long, narrow barricaded strip of the Boardwalk.

While the nautically-themed costumes were as clever, colorful and outrageous as ever, some of the participants opted to give their looks topical twists. These included not-so-subtle references to the BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico (mermaids smeared with black paint, pasties shaped like oil wells) and sly nods to this summer’s vampire craze (mermaids with fangs and bloody neck wounds).

But whether they are classic or trendy, flashy or subtle, one thing is certain at this parade: everybody loves a mermaid.

Dick Zigun, unofficial mayor of Coney Island, leads the parade

Laurie Anderson and Lou Reed under a parasol

Banners for King Neptune, Queen Mermaid and the Royal Mer-Dog

Spectators crowded onto every surface

Yes, even elephants

Mermaids get thirsty, too

A pirate smiles on the boardwalk

A mermaid with blue hair

Colorful creature from the sea

A crown of sea serpents

Pretty in pink

Vampire mermaid

A blonde mermaid

Lobsters, come out and play …

Coney Island USA Mermaid Parade

Dyke March NYC

June 26, 2009

Now in its 17th year, the Dyke March NYC is a protest, not a parade. The people who participate in this annual event are motivated by a desire to increase their visibility and make their voices heard.

Thousands of dykes take over the streets every year in celebration of lesbians and to protest against ongoing discrimination, harassment, and anti-lesbian violence in schools, on the job, in our families, and on the streets.

The march goes down Fifth Avenue from Bryant Park to Washington Square. While the organizers never obtain permits for the march, the NYPD takes a rather benevolent view. All along the route, police officers block traffic, pose for photos, wave and generally enjoy Dyke March duty.

Even though it rained during most of the march, one police officer remarked, “Watching these women is the highlight of my week.” I hope you agree.


Police cars lead the way


Police and marshalls stop traffic


Here come the marchers


Drummers keep the beat


The rain didn’t dampen spirits


Finally, the storm tapered off


Marchers were drenched but happy


Very happy


Some were silly, too


Kids also participated


NYPD posing and grinning


Spectators’ signs were wet but legible


Marchers carried signs, too


You don’t need a sign to carry a message


A marshall in her “uniform”


Dancing in the street


A couple with a message


Walking in the sunshine


Visibility was important


So was togetherness


Her shirt says “I love my two moms”


The march ended at Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village


These marchers were inspired by the Village People


The mood in the park was celebratory


And triumphant


Rainbows appeared everywhere


Even on flags


Veterans of past marches sat and sang together


Even visitors to the city showed their pride

Dyke March


May 17, 2009

It was an overcast day and I was heading home when a police officer mentioned that I should stick around because Ecuafest was about to start.

Ecuafest? Ecuawho? Ecuawhat?

The police couldn’t tell me much more, only that they had just been assigned to work at the Ecuadoran parade that would soon head down Central Park West. So I stayed and watched the event from beginning to end.

It was tiny, as parades in New York go: a single vendor selling souvenirs, a couple of dancing groups, a couple of beauty queens, some handful of politicians with sashes across their chests and a couple of vehicles decorated with flags and banners.

The biggest attraction was a man dressed in a summer white suit who was surrounded by bodyguards. His arrival created all the pandemonium the small group of spectators could create, as young and old scrambled to take his photo, obtain his autograph, pose beside him and shake his hand. I didn’t recognize him, but I realized that he was some sort of star. Later I learned that he was Alex Aguinaga, hailed as one of the best Ecuadorian footballers of all time.

The promoters of Ecuafest (I later found it advertised on Craigslist) promised that it would go for two and a half hours, but the entire parade lasted less than half an hour, colorful, peaceful, short and sweet.

Please join us as we celebrate Ecuafest 2009, the third annual observance of the Ecuadorian Independence in the city of New York. The National Ecuadorian Day Parade will initiate this year’s festivities on Sunday, May 17th. Showcasing the largest array of Ecuadorian traditions in the form of dances and colorful floats. It will move along Central Park West from 110th Street to its routes end at the corner of 96th Street from 12:30PM-3:00PM.


Selling souvenirs

Waiting for the parade to start

Alone but enthusiastic

Here come the sashes

A politician and a pretty girl

Álex Aguinaga and his bodyguards

Aguinaga and a fan

Dancing down the street

The dance group moves in step

Young dancers watch a more experienced group

Beauty queen in an open car

Skirts swirling in the air

Men wearing traditional costumes

A vehicle in the parade

Álex Aguinaga
Ecuafest Web site
Ecuafest on Craigslist

The Howl-o-Ween Parade

October 26, 2008

Once again, Brooklyn is the site of the annual Howl-o-Ween Dog Parade and Contest. Organized by the owners of animal accessory and grooming shop Perfect Paws, the parade is a fund raiser for several animal charities (Brooklyn Animal Rescue Coalition (BARC), Friends of Hillside Dog Park, Blue Rider Stables and Animal Kind) and a source of amusement to the residents of Brooklyn Heights.

The procession of the animals (and owners) in Halloween costumes began on the Brooklyn Promenade at Remsen Street, where it attracted the attention of astonished tourists, proceeded north, and ended at the judges’ table outside the Harry Chapin Playground at Columbia Heights and Middagh Street.

The parade, now in its sixth year, continues to grow larger and attract more attention. Today’s gathering drew several local reporters, most of them fascinated by the two dogs — accompanied by humans dressed as moose — disguised as Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin. While I’m no expert on fashion, I’m guessing that the doggy Sarahs’ wardrobes cost way less than the human Sarah’s, and generated far less controversy, too.

Judges review a contestant

NY Giant appeals to the judges

Greyhound dressed as a greyhound

I bark for Barack

Dog disguised as a bumblebee

Pug in a butterfly suit

Super hero

Alice in Wonderland

Scuba dog

Scuba dog with family

Chinese dragon

French maid guards the prizes

Spider dog

Babushka lady

Neurosurgeon and patient

Sanitation worker picks up trash

In a lion suit

Dog dragon … or maybe dinosaur

Wonder Woman

Matching dog and girl ballerinas

Girl who matches dog ballerina

Poodle as ballerina

Chinese dragon with family

Pirate dog of the Caribbean

Cow dog and milk carton

Dog pimp held by “hooker”

Austin Powers

Cat flower – the sole feline entrant

Pirate dog

Moose holding Sarah Palin

Moose with Sarah Palin

NY Post: Dog Day for Halloween
Perfect Paws
Brooklyn Animal Rescue Coalition (BARC)
Friends of Hillside Dog Park
Animal Kind

Mexican Day Parade

September 21, 2008

Most of the year, New York’s Mexican community is nearly invisible. To outsiders, its members appear to be no different than any of the other recently-arrived Latin American immigrants. But today is Mexican residents’ day to shine.

This afternoon the Mexican Day Parade (also known as the Mexican Independence Parade) was held on Madison Avenue between 26th and 42nd Streets. A relatively recent tradition, which celebrates Mexico’s independence from Spain, the annual event began in the 1990s and has grown larger every year.

Today a procession of lowriders (both the automotive and bicycle varieties) roared down the street, followed by floats, marching bands and a large contingent of Bolivian dancers. The weather was perfect, the crowd was enthusiastic, the mariachis played, the women danced and the kids were entranced. It was a great day for vendors selling anything in green, red and white (the colors of the Mexican flag), too.

Watching the parade

The queen of the parade

Young couple

Viva Mexico headband


Boy with painted face

Sitting and watching

A dancer


Girl in the crowd

Boy holding flag

Drummers from marching band

Friends watching together

Proud papa

Peeking out from under police barrier

Holding a mask

Lowrider family

Stroller draped with sequined saint

Dancers leaping


NY Times: Parade Dispute Is a Rite of Passage for Mexicans

When Irish Eyes Are Smiling

March 17, 2008

In New York City, St. Patrick’s Day is the day that everyone is — or wishes they were — Irish. Fifth Avenue is closed to traffic, the street’s center stripe is painted green, and thousands of marchers, dancers and celebrants make their way up the avenue in the world’s largest celebration of Irish heritage and culture.

Dancers heading up 5th Avenue

Pipers walk on the green striped roadway

Cheerleaders from Utrecht High School

Family with green hair

Dublin girl with green eyelashes

Woman with beer goggles

Uniformed officers salute the pipers

Marching band with shining brass

Friends with green hair

Mother & son celebrate

Sisters in faux leopard skin coats

Wearing a green tam o’ shanter

Smiling in festive hats

A band of pipers marching

Pipers in kilts near 82nd Street

Man with a drum

Fisherman’s knit sweater and tweed cap

Girl from Fordham in tartan plaid

Friends in green

Tiny leprauchan around his neck

Her tiara says “Irish Princess”

Today everybody is Irish

Carrying American flags

Man with green goatee and brows

Girl with shamrocks

St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Welcoming a New Year in an Old Neighborhood

February 10, 2008

This old neighborhood in Lower Manhattan has been known as “Chinatown” since the mid-eighteenth century.

While it hasn’t been the center of New York’s Chinese life for decades, the area remains the city’s oldest and best-known Chinatown (New York’s other Chinatowns are located in Sunset Park, Brooklyn and Flushing, Queens) and it is still the site of the region’s largest lunar New Year celebration.

Today, the narrow, twisting streets were filled beyond capacity as thousands of people squeezed in to buy souvenirs, cheer the dancers, drummers and marchers, and twist the cardboard tubes of confetti shooters ($5 each! Three for $10!) until their contents exploded, showering the crowd with shiny paper and foil.

This year, as the parade welcoming the Year of the Rat drew to a end, a sudden, fierce snowstorm erupted. The swirling white flakes mixed with the brightly-colored steamers, delighting the children, quickly clearing out the celebrants and creating a memorable close to this chilly, festive day.

New Year’s decorations for sale on Mott Street

The streets were packed

The star of the day, the New Year’s Rat

Getting a good view of the parade

Boy with a lion costume

Displaying white lion mask

Good thing Dad is tall

Some kids can’t see a thing

Wearing mouse ears to honor the Rat

Grown-ups wore mouse ears, too

Metallic streamers landed in her hair

Father & daughter try to trigger confetti shooter

Boy with confetti shooter

Girl with New Year’s sweets

Paper dragon in a storefront

Enthralled by the spectacle

A smile as big as the parade

Girl having a great time

The air was filled with confetti

That isn’t just paper falling!

It’s snowing!

The crowd starts to clear out

Soon only the police are left walking through the storm

Lunar New Year’s Parade

February 9, 2008

The day was rainy and cold, but spirits were still bright for the 13th annual Lunar New Year parade in Flushing, Queens.

Here, in the neighborhood that is home to New York’s largest Asian population, the Chinese and Korean communities marched down Main Street to welcome in the Year of the Rat. Happy New Year!

Mounted police officers lead the parade

NYPD Marching Band

The Chinese marchers begin

There’s a kid under that gigantic mask

Carrying flags

The mouse ears symbolize the Year of the Rat

A lion on parade

Carrying flags

A little lion dances

A dragon held aloft

Martial arts demonstration

Beating the drum

The kids are enthralled

A costumed dancer

Large dragon is held aloft

Korean-American Association

Marching band

Drummers and dancers

Banging the gong

Riding on a float

Beating a drum

Clanging the cymbals

Girls in Korean dress

Traditional Korean costume

Korean War veterans

Veterans marching on Main Street

WNYC: Lunar New Year Kicks Off in Flushing
Times-Ledger: Flushing Gears Up

New York Dyke March

June 23, 2007

Chances are that you’ve never heard of it, but for a small, dedicated group, it has become an annual tradition. The occurrence? The New York Dyke March.

Although it has taken place in Manhattan every year since 1993, I never saw this highly-political event until today.

The organizers carefully stress that it is a protest march to promote lesbian rights and visibility, not a parade, and that — unlike tomorrow’s enormous Pride Parade — it takes place without city permits or corporate sponsorship.

Marchers gathered in midtown at Bryant Park, then headed down Fifth Avenue to Greenwich Village’s Washington Square, carrying banners, beating drums and gathering more women along the way.

While the Pride Parade attracts international news coverage, the New York Dyke March receives scant attention in the major media. Nevertheless, it always manages to draw thousands of participants and spectators in New York and similar marches are now held in major cities across the United States and around the world.  

The March begins at Bryant Park
The March begins at Bryant Park

4 Queer Womyn's Rights
4 Queer Womyn’s Rights

Queer Justice League
Queer Justice League

A pair of spectators

Rainbow lei
Woman with rainbow lei

Temporary tattoo
Temporary tattoo

Couple in straw hats
Couple in straw hats

Unsponsored. Unpermitted.
Unsponsored. Unpermitted.

Woman from GO magazine
Woman from GO magazine

Orange shirt
Orange shirt

Pink lipstick and bandanna
Pink lipstick and bandanna

Woman with rainbows
Woman with rainbows

Let my mommies marry
Let my mommies marry

Three women
Three friends

Little feminist
Her shirt says “Little Feminist”

New Orleans needs stronger dikes
New Orleans needs stronger dikes

Sunglasses on her head
Sunglasses on her head

Red hoodie and bike
Red hoodie and bike

Pink hair & pink bike
Pink hair & pink bike

T-shirt with heart
T-shirt with heart

Happy Pride
Happy Pride

I love vegan dykes
I love vegan dykes

Not your grandmother's lesbian
Not your grandmother’s lesbian

NYC Dyke March
Lesbian Avengers
MySpace: Queer Justice League
Queer Justice League

Remembering in Bay Ridge

May 28, 2007

This is a side of Brooklyn you’ve never seen on television or in the movies. Here, in the southwestern corner of the borough, in the shadow of the Verrazzano-Narrows bridge, is a place bursting with patriotism and pride.

Today, in this location, there are no wiseguys, gangstas, hipsters or poseurs. No protestors or dissenters, either. Those who crowd the streets and the park have all come for what is known as “the longest-running continuous Memorial Day parade in the United States.”

For the 140th year, those who came to the Bay Ridge Memorial Day parade marched, watched, cheered and waved their flags. They listened to accounts of battles gone by, sacrifices made and lives lost. They wore their uniforms, patches, ribbons and medals, embraced old friends and, quietly, unashamedly wiped away their tears.

On this sunny day, a normally-busy section of the city that never sleeps stopped, stood at attention and remembered. And on Memorial Day in Bay Ridge, no “designer” label could ever equal the status of an ordinary Broooklynite clad in red, white and blue.

Good Fellas Barber Shop
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Kelly’s Tavern with bunting
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Couple paying respects
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Rolling Thunder motorcycle
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Rolling Thunder
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Quartet of Scouts
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Girl Scouts
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Group of Scouts
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Veterans & granddaughter
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Members of the American Legion
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Lady in a yellow suit
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Member of Rolling Thunder
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Originally uploaded by annulla.

Boy Scouts
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Friends in uniform
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Family group
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Scout & Mom
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Vet with helmet & flag
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Rolling Thunder pair
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Women with flags
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Courier-Life: Brooklyn celebrates Memorial Day ‘07
NYC Dept of Parks & Recreation: This Memorial Day Weekend
Bay Ridge Blog

In Your Easter Bonnet

April 8, 2007

Easter Parade
In your Easter bonnet
With all the frills upon it
You’ll be the grandest lady in the Easter parade

I’ll be all in clover
And when they look you over
I’ll be the proudest fellow in the Easter parade

On the Avenue, Fifth Avenue
The photographers will snap us
And you’ll find that you’re in the rotogravure

Oh, I could write a sonnet
About your Easter bonnet
And of the girl I’m taking to the Easter parade

– Irving Berlin, 1933

The Easter Parade is one of New York’s best-known and least understood holiday traditions. There are no floats, no marching bands, no reviewing stand, no check-in table, no starting spot or finish line. It’s not that kind of parade. In fact, there’s not much organization at all.

The event’s title stems from the use of “parade” as a verb meaning “to promenade in a public place, esp. in order to show off.” Every Easter Sunday, Fifth Avenue from 49th to 57th Streets (roughly the area between Rockefeller Center and Central Park) is closed to traffic for several hours while the paraders stroll along the pavement.

Anyone who wants to participate is free to join in at any time while the celebration is taking place. Street musicians, face painters, food vendors and others who want attention tend to show up, too.

But the focus of the parade is on ordinary people, specially dressed for the day, meandering up and down the street to greet each other, show off their outfits (particularly their “Easter bonnets”) and proudly pose for innumerable photographers and admirers.

Pink & white ears
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Sticking out her tongue
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Lavender bunny & shirt
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Pink Garden
Originally uploaded by annulla.

I Love Lucy hat
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Many colored feathers
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Hat with blue parrots
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Black leather & teddy bear
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Happy Easter scene hat
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Pink & silver hat
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Originally uploaded by annulla.

Old-fashioned elegance
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Dressed up couple
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Two toppers
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Originally uploaded by annulla.

Originally uploaded by annulla.

Easter Parade film
As Thousands Cheer
Dictionary: Parade

The Wearin’ o’ the Green

March 17, 2007

On March 16 the city was battered by a fierce blizzard and an ice storm. Trains and flights were cancelled, drivers skidded and slid off the roads and pedestrians ran to the nearest store, stocked up on bread and milk, then scurried home and locked their doors.

But for those who wait all year for the wearin’ o’ the green, winter’s last gasp was a mere inconvenience; nothing could stop the 246th New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. This is the city’s largest and most popular parade, typically drawing 2 million spectators and 150,000 marchers.

In New York the tradition is older than the nation; our first St. Patrick’s Day Parade was organized by Irish soldiers serving in His Majesty’s service more than 10 years before the Declaration of Independence was drafted.

The St Patrick’s Day Parade is one of the few that allow no cars, floats, trucks or other vehicles; anyone who wants to participate goes up Fifth Avenue, from 44th Street to 86th Street, on foot.

So, despite the day-long storm that nearly brought the city to a halt, city sanitation crews worked throughout the night to clear the route of ice and snow for today’s big parade. Other municipal agencies were busy, too, as subway and railroad schedules were adjusted to accommodate parade goers, the surrounding streets closed and barriers erected along the parade route.

The weather prevented the work crews from painting the traditional green stripe down the middle of the street, but everything else was as usual. Pipers and marching bands from around the country (and a few from the auld sod) nervously fingered their instruments. Firefighters and police officers assembled in their full dress uniforms. Souvenir vendors loaded themselves up with green balloons, green hats, green beads, shamrock stickers, Irish flags and badges saying “VIP: Very Irish Person” and “Kiss Me, I’m Irish.”

At the stroke of 11:00 the parade began, and it didn’t end until about 4:30, when the last red-headed, green-shirted boy giddily heard the applause as he crossed 86th Street. I hope your St. Patrick’s Day was as happy and exciting as his.

A lamppost on Fifth Avenue
Originally uploaded by annulla.

The last boy across 86th Street
Originally uploaded by annulla.

A green tie and a special cap
Originally uploaded by annulla.

The Buena Colts Marching Band from Arizona
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Wearing a green beret
Originally uploaded by annulla.

An experienced piper
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Banner of the Glasgow Celtic Supporters
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Father & daughter marched together
Originally uploaded by annulla.

A visitor from Vermont
Originally uploaded by annulla.

You don’t have to be Irish
Originally uploaded by annulla.

A marcher from New Jersey
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Displaying his faith
Originally uploaded by annulla.

His mother comes from Kerry
Originally uploaded by annulla.

Official St. Patrick’s Day Parade Web Site
Emigrant Online
Irish Echo
Irish Dirt

The Village Halloween Parade

October 31, 2006

In 1973, Greenwich Village mask maker and puppeteer Ralph Lee staged a house-to-house puppet show to entertain his neighbors, children and friends. Thirty-three years later, Lee’s show has evolved into the nation’s largest public Halloween celebration.

This year more than two million people lined Sixth Avenue to watch the Village Halloween Parade while another four million watched a live broadcast on local TV station NY1. Many of the people standing behind the barriers watching were as elaborately costumed as those who were marching, dancing and riding up the street.

Hometown boys (well, at least they are former New Yorkers) Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons of the rock band Kiss served as the Grand Marshals of the four hour event which included elaborate floats, choreographed dancers, dozens of marching bands, hundreds of puppets and more than 50,000 costumed marchers.

The sheer numbers make the event sound overwhelming but (unlike many other Halloween celebrations) the Village Halloween Parade isn’t raucous or rowdy; it remains a good-natured, friendly outdoor party for vampires, zombies, superheroes and kids of all ages.

Strawberry & big brother  Posted by Picasa

Man carrying skeleton puppet  Posted by Picasa

Captain Morgan  Posted by Picasa

MTV VJ & “David Letterman”  Posted by Picasa

Naughty cop & naughty maid  Posted by Picasa

Reporter & “Paris Hilton”  Posted by Picasa

Desperate housewife  Posted by Picasa

Stay-Puft marshmallow man  Posted by Picasa

Man in a pink tuxedo  Posted by Picasa

Martini girl  Posted by Picasa

Catwoman and Psycho Santa  Posted by Picasa

“Paris Hilton”  Posted by Picasa

Spoon man  Posted by Picasa

Lobster boy  Posted by Picasa

Beheaded man  Posted by Picasa

Blue-haired lady  Posted by Picasa

Corpse bride  Posted by Picasa

Zombie barista  Posted by Picasa

Elf  Posted by Picasa

Cheerleader Posted by Picasa

Raccoon  Posted by Picasa

The Riddler  Posted by Picasa

Religious guy  Posted by Picasa

Devil & Zombie  Posted by Picasa

Masked man  Posted by Picasa

Cow  Posted by Picasa

Spongebob Squarepants  Posted by Picasa

Bearded bumblebee  Posted by Picasa

Sock monkey Posted by Picasa

Man with a headache Posted by Picasa

Acrobats  Posted by Picasa

Viagra man  Posted by Picasa

Zombie  Posted by Picasa

Banana boy & friend  Posted by Picasa

Scooby Doo  Posted by Picasa

Easy chair  Posted by Picasa

Can-can girl  Posted by Picasa

First-class mail  Posted by Picasa

Hot dog girl  Posted by Picasa

Edward Scissorhands  Posted by Picasa

Orange feathers & red hair  Posted by Picasa

Woman with live parrots  Posted by Picasa

Puppeteers  Posted by Picasa

“Pamela Anderson” & “Kid Rock”  Posted by Picasa

Bagged spinach with E Coli  Posted by Picasa

Wolf & wizard  Posted by Picasa

Vampires  Posted by Picasa

Autumn leaf  Posted by Picasa

Little nurse  Posted by Picasa

“Borat”  Posted by Picasa

Little dinosaur in a stroller  Posted by Picasa

The Munsters  Posted by Picasa

Gilligan & palm tree Posted by Picasa

Real cop & zombie cop  Posted by Picasa

Dia De Los Muertos  Posted by Picasa

Jack O’Lantern puppets  Posted by Picasa

Scary implants  Posted by Picasa

“Prince” & “Madonna”  Posted by Picasa

On the Mannheim Steamroller float  Posted by Picasa

Grand Marshals from Kiss  Posted by Picasa

Paul Stanley & Gene Simmons  Posted by Picasa

  • New York Village Halloween Parade
  • Kiss
  • NY1

  • Halloween Parade & Costume Extravaganza

    October 29, 2006

    On this crisp autumn day, canines from Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO gathered for the 2nd Annual Dog Halloween Parade and Costume Extravaganza. About 60 animals and their human companions assembled at the Remsen St. entrance to the Brooklyn Promenade, then scampered to the Harry Chapin Playground for judging.

    The event’s sponsor, Perfect Paws, awarded dog-centric prizes for costumes in categories such as best large dog, best small dog, best store-bought, best homemade and most original. All entry fees from the Parade and Costume Extravaganza are being donated to the Hillside Dog Run and the Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition (BARC) and will be used to benefit the animals of Brooklyn.

    Parading towards the Playground Posted by Picasa

    Little Orphan Annie Posted by Picasa

    A little witch Posted by Picasa

    Shar-pei cheerleader (sans pom-poms) Posted by Picasa

    Count Dracula Posted by Picasa

    A pig Posted by Picasa

    Dragon & friend Posted by Picasa

    Elvis & clown Posted by Picasa

    In Happy Halloween shirt & bandana Posted by Picasa

    Angel inspecting the judges  Posted by Picasa

    Little Red Riding Hood & Wolf Posted by Picasa

    In a ball gown  Posted by Picasa

    Hot dog with ketchup Posted by Picasa

    Little Elvis Posted by Picasa

    Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz Posted by Picasa

    Fairy princess Posted by Picasa

    Another Elvis Posted by Picasa

    Security dog Posted by Picasa

    Hippie Posted by Picasa

    In a poncho & sombrero Posted by Picasa

    Hula girl Posted by Picasa

    Devil  Posted by Picasa

    Bark Mitzvah boy Posted by Picasa

  • Perfect Paws
  • Harry Chapin Playground
  • Hillside Dog Park
  • BARC
  • The SITS Girls

  • Dancing up Fifth Avenue for 41 Years

    October 8, 2006

    By definition, the word Hispanic refers to people from the Spanish-speaking areas of the Americas and the Caribbean.

    For 41 years, New York’s United Hispanic-American Parade has brought together people whose origins are in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Uruguay and Venezuela.

    Dressed in their national and regional costumes, thousands of men, women and children mambo, salsa, merengue, cha-cha and tango up Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. The dancers’ energy and joy is contagious, the drummers hands are frenetic, and the massed spectators smile, sway and wave flags in time to the relentless beat.

    Girl with yellow pom-poms Posted by Picasa

    Girls in orange Posted by Picasa

    Girl with blue eyeshadow Posted by Picasa

    Puerto Rican woman Posted by Picasa

    Dancers waiting for their cue Posted by Picasa

    A dancer and her beau Posted by Picasa

    Men with bells on their boots Posted by Picasa

    Girl in ostrich feathers Posted by Picasa

    Girl in pink and green Posted by Picasa

    Boys and girls in pink and green Posted by Picasa

    Men with skulls on their chests Posted by Picasa

    People in Peruvian costumes Posted by Picasa

    Drummers marching up the avenue Posted by Picasa

  • New York Hispanic Parade
  • Galos Corp.: New York Hispanic Parade History

  • West Indies at Borough Hall

    June 28, 2006

    This evening, commuters emerging from busses and subways near Borough Hall were greeted by the sound of beating drums, shaking maracas and resonating gourds. It was an outdoor concert organized by the West Indian American Day Carnival Association, the folks responsible for the annual Labor Day parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway.

    Dancer on stilts Posted by Picasa

    Two dancers on stilts kicking backwards in unison Posted by Picasa

    Playing the guitar Posted by Picasa

    Orange and white feathers Posted by Picasa

    Pink and orange feathers Posted by Picasa

    Young dancer Posted by Picasa

  • West Indian American Day Carnival Association

  • Pride Parade 2006

    June 25, 2006

    When it comes to homosexuality, most gay organizations are determined to project an image of normalcy in which all gay men are Will Truman and all lesbians Ellen DeGeneres.

    — Riki Wilchins

    This massive last-Sunday-in-June event has always been characterized by a mixture of flamboyance and defiance. Initially known as the “Christopher Street Gay Liberation Day March,” it began as a way to commemorate the first anniversary of the Stonewall Riots – the singular event that sparked the gay rights movement.

    The Stonewall Riots (also known as the Stonewall Rebellion) took place over several nights in June 1969. The riots started during what was supposed to be a routine police raid at the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar on Christopher Street. According to Martin Duberman’s book, Stonewall, the rebellion was sparked when a police officer prodded drag queen and incipient transgender activist Sylvia Rivera with a nightstick and she responded by throwing a bottle at him.

    A melee ensued and the angry crowd overwhelmed the surprised officers who’d expected the crowd at the Stonewall, like all their predecessors, to quietly enter the paddy wagon and submit to arrests for “indecency.” When passers-by and patrons of other bars in the neighborhood joined the fight, the NYPD brought in reinforcements and riot gear. Before it was over, a crowd of 2,000 protestors fought 400 police officers. Once unleashed, their sense of injustice and outrage quickly led to the formation of several gay rights organizations.

    Over the years, the anger and rebellion that fomented the gay rights movement have been largely replaced – at least in the mainstream media – by a more conservative message, a more inclusive, celebratory and conciliatory tone. The march turned into a parade, the words “Liberation” and “Freedom” were replaced with “Pride,” the focus on transgender rights and concerns was replaced by the fight for legalized gay marriage.

    But this year, the rage and outrageousness that fueled the movement’s beginnings returned to the front pages and parade-goers’ conscienceness. On June 11, popular drag performer and Billboard chart-topping singer Kevin Aviance was attacked outside a gay bar in the East Village. He was robbed and savagely beaten by a group of men who yelled “Kill the faggot” and pelted him with garbage.

    Suffering from a broken jaw and requiring extensive physical therapy, it appeared that he would be unable to participate, as scheduled, in the parade’s after-party.

    However, two days before the march he told the New York Post, “I am getting my mouth unwired for one day, so that I can be done up for the Gay Pride Day Parade on Sunday.” And so he did. Today he made a triumphant return to the public eye, riding Hannibal-like on the back of an elephant while waving to the ecstatic, cheering, wildly proud crowd.

    Gay bashers can kiss my ass Posted by Picasa

    From the LGBT Community Center Posted by Picasa

    Baby blue accessories Posted by Picasa

    Dressed in MetroCards Posted by Picasa

    Pink hat Posted by Picasa

    The Barry Z Show: 15 years of great TV Posted by Picasa

    The colors of Brazil Posted by Picasa

    Puerto Rico Posted by Picasa

    Purple and gold Posted by Picasa

    Red and yellow Posted by Picasa

    From the Center Posted by Picasa

    Svedka Vodka float Posted by Picasa

    Lady Bunny for Svedka Vodka Posted by Picasa

    Rainbow Mohawk Posted by Picasa

    Matching bandana & motorcycle Posted by Picasa

    American by birth, biker by choice Posted by Picasa

    Evita, direct from Argentina Posted by Picasa

    Dancing men in lederhosen Posted by Picasa

    CrossDressers International Posted by Picasa

    Big water gun Posted by Picasa

    Radio station KTU 103.5 float Posted by Picasa

    Columbia float Posted by Picasa

    Another Gay Movie Posted by Picasa

    Just out of the hospital, Kevin Aviance Posted by Picasa

    Kevin Aviance Posted by Picasa

  • Heritage of Pride
  • Stonewall Veteran’s Association
  • Sylvia Rivera: 1951-2002
  • Riki Wilchins: In Memory of Sylvia Rivera
  • Queenmother: Kevin Aviance
  • Drag Queen Beaten in E. Village Horror
  • Back With Pride
  • New York City Gay & Lesbian Anti-Violence Project

  • Mermaids in The Rain

    June 24, 2006

    The Northeast part of the United States has been pelted with rain for days, but regardless of the weather, local Mermaids were determined to hold their parade today on the streets of Coney Island.

    There were few drizzles during the 24th Annual Mermaid Parade, but the crowds in the streets were unusually sparse, the skies were gray, some of the floats were draped with tarpulins and more than one participant carried an umbrella. And when the marching (and dancing, strutting, singing and swinging) stopped, the skies opened. Good thing that all mermaids love water.

    The Mermaid Parade Posted by Picasa

    The “mayor” of Coney Island banging his own drum Posted by Picasa

    East Village Sea Monster Marching Band Posted by Picasa

    Chef vs. lobster Posted by Picasa

    Mermaid and Captain Posted by Picasa

    Sea-Funk All Star Band Posted by Picasa

    Bride and Grouper with attendants Posted by Picasa

    Burleque queen Little Brooklyn & her boyfriend Posted by Picasa

    Republi-Sea-Monster Posted by Picasa

    Rockin’ little mer-boy Posted by Picasa

    Patriotic mermaid Posted by Picasa

    Marilyn Mermaid Posted by Picasa

    Blue mermaid Posted by Picasa

    Wearing pink on the Boardwalk Posted by Picasa

    Tatooed mermaid Posted by Picasa

    Mermaid and (soon-to-be) mer-mom Posted by Picasa

    Red & white fish Posted by Picasa

    Wearing the official parade hat Posted by Picasa

    Man, dog & parrot Posted by Picasa

    Man-eating goldfish Posted by Picasa

    Bambi the Mermaid and indy director Abel Ferrera Posted by Picasa

    Ginger & the Skipper (sans Gilligan) Posted by Picasa

    Elvis of the sea Posted by Picasa

    New York’s Finest Posted by Picasa

    Trio of New York’s Finest Posted by Picasa

    After the parade, a lone mermaid stands in the rain Posted by Picasa

  • Mermaid Parade
  • Costume Network
  • Kostume Kult
  • Little Brooklyn
  • Bambi The Mermaid
  • Nathan’s

  • The Year of the Dog

    February 5, 2006

    Last Sunday, January 29, was the first day of the Chinese Lunar New Year. Today New York City celebrated with the 7th Annual Chinatown New Year Parade.

    The unusually warm and sunny day drew throngs of spectators and marchers and, in honor of the Year of the Dog, the parade included a contingent of colorfully costumed canines. Gung Hay Fat Choy!

    Banging the gong Posted by Picasa

    Red and yellow balloons Posted by Picasa

    Preserve and build affordable housing Posted by Picasa

    Riding a float Posted by Picasa

    Spectators Posted by Picasa

    Green coat Posted by Picasa

    Back of dragon Posted by Picasa

    Dragon Posted by Picasa

    Colored paper fills the air Posted by Picasa

    Red brocade coat Posted by Picasa

    Blue brocade coat Posted by Picasa

    Happy new year Posted by Picasa

    Happy new year Posted by Picasa

    Happy new year Posted by Picasa

    Happy new year Posted by Picasa

    By morning, it will all be gone Posted by Picasa

  • Chinatown New York City
  • China Institute
  • Chinese New Year

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