Coney Island Mermaid Parade
The Coney Island Mermaid Parade is an art parade held annually in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York. The event, the largest art parade in the United States, is held each year in June and celebrates the arrival of the summer season. Created and produced by the non-profit arts organization Coney Island USA, the 37th annual parade was held on June 22, 2019.
|Coney Island Mermaid Parade|
|Venue||Coney Island Boardwalk|
|Location(s)||Coney Island, New York|
|Most recent||June 22, 2019|
|Website||Coney Island Mermaid Parade|
The Mermaid Parade traditionally takes place on the Saturday closest to the summer solstice, June 21, regardless of weather. Its intent is to celebrate self-expression, boost pride in Coney Island, and give New York artists a place to display their artwork. There are no ethnic, religious, or commercial aims.
The parade pays homage to the Coney Island Mardi Gras parades of the early 20th century. During this era, Coney Island was the primary amusement park destination for those in the New York metropolitan area. Like the annual Village Halloween Parade, the Mermaid Parade evokes the artistic spirit of Mardi Gras.
The event typically attracts about 3,000 participants and hundreds of thousands of spectators from all five boroughs of New York City. Some spectators travel to Coney Island's beach to escape the heat that often occurs during the beginning of summer.
The tradition began in 1983, when the first event of this kind was conceptualized and organized by Dick Zigun, who is sometimes dubbed the "Mayor of Coney Island", and who was the founder of the non-profit arts organization Coney Island USA.
The parade of June 22, 2013 was almost canceled due to a lack of money and resources following the recovery from Hurricane Sandy. It was rescued through a successful Kickstarter campaign that raised $117,000, more than the $100,000 goal.
The Mermaid Parade is known for marine costumes, occasional partial nudity. There are sections in the parade for vehicles of all kinds, for floats, for groups, and for individuals. The organizers of the parade claim to encourage bribery, so that participants have a better chance to win the various costume contests, which are also part of the day's entertainment.
Each year the Mermaid Parade features a King Neptune and Queen Mermaid.
- Weaver, Shaye. "What to know about this year's Mermaid Parade". am New York. Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "Nautical weddings and more secrets of the Mermaid Parade". am New York. Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "Coney Island USA and the Coney Island Brewery Present: The 37th Annual Mermaid Parade | Coney Island USA". www.coneyisland.com. Retrieved 2019-05-02.
- "Coney Island USA & Coney Island Brewery Present: The 36th Annual Mermaid Parade with co-presenter Kitchen 21 | Coney Island USA". www.coneyisland.com. Retrieved 25 September 2018.
- "Nautical weddings and more secrets of the Mermaid Parade". am New York. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
- "6 Fast Facts On The 34th Annual Mermaid Parade". 2016-06-13. Retrieved 2018-04-18.
- "Biography of Dick Zigun". Coney Island USA.
Unofficial Mayor of Coney Island
- Mooney, Jake (September 26, 2008). "What It Means to Be 'Mayor' of the Block". NY Times.
- Plitt, Amy (May 30, 2013). "Kickstarter success stories: Mermaid Parade, Gemini & Scorpio get funding". Time Out New York.
- Coney Island USA. "Save the Coney Island Mermaid from Extinction!". Kick Starter.
- it is legal in New York State for women to be topless in public
- "Photos: 2010 Mermaid Parade (NSFW)". Time Out New York. June 21, 2010.