Throngs of New Yorkers festooned in sparkly neon fishnets, purple glitter and dolphin-shaped crowns descended on Coney Island this past Saturday for the 36th Annual Coney Island Mermaid Parade. Beachgoers were treated to frolicking sharks atop floats and merrymakers in various stages of undress (and suitably fishy gowns), along with notable figures like Mermaid Queen Amanda Palmer and King Neptune Neil Gaiman. Love, sweat, sea spray and mermaid pride mingled in the air above the jubilant crowd.
Watch our video, above, to see all the action and hear from the parade’s organizers. Then click through our slideshow, below, for more.
It was mermaid time in Coney Island on Saturday, as New Yorkers once again paraded past the Cyclone and Nathan’s in everything from elaborate sea-creature costumes to, well, basically nothing. Despite a rainy start, the 35th annual Mermaid Parade was as merry as ever, with many a parader having cleverly turned their transparent umbrella into a floating jellyfish. Click through our slideshow to see the pageantry that, as the parade’s website puts it, “celebrates ancient mythology and honky-tonk rituals of the seaside.”
The Mermaid Parade, Coney Island’s annual crowd-pleaser and glitter-industry Black Friday, is back on solid financial footing — and not a moment too soon — thanks to an unexpected deus ex machina: the intervention of two generous private donations supplementing an ongoing crowdfunding campaign.
Despite the recent news that Debbie Harry and Chris Stein of Blondie fame will raise their scepters as this year’s Queen Mermaid and King Neptune, the Parade had been struggling. A “Feed the Mermaids” crowdfunding campaign to save the parade has so far raised $9,000, far short of its $50,000 goal.