New York

Rediscovering New York: The Easter Parade (a.k.a Mill About) and Easter Bonnet Festival

No one would ever mistake Manhattan for being a touchy-feely city. People mostly keep to themselves and the pace can make even the most type – A personality long for a breath. But now and then a holidayIMG_9857 comes along and the city softens. Crowds brim with laughter and smiles and the only goal is to have fun—with strangers no less.

And so it was yesterday, at the annual Easter Parade and Easter Bonnet Festival. The name is a bit of a misnomer really since there’s actually no parade, it’s more of an Easter Mill About with thousands of people front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

Revelers spent weeks making beautifully crafted hats that ranged from stunning period pieces to off-the-wall wacky, some wore full costumes, and everyone else came to take pictures. Fifth Avenue was a barrage of selfies. Picture the commotion surrounding a Kardashian and multiply that by 10.

For those with the best ensembles (and there were A LOT of amazing creations), crowds surrounded them five people deep. For hours, the boldly attired were the center of attention. Most of the costumed folks I spoke to were long-time regulars of the event. The Easter Parade was a source of an annual 15 minutes of fame.

Did you know that the Easter Parade dates back to the 1800’s? Originally, the hoity toity of the time used to stroll down Fifth Avenue, dressed in their finest, after church services for the rest of the world to see.

Today it’s a spectacle of another kind, and loads of fun.

Here’s a peek at what I saw. (Bonus: you’ll find a little video I threw together at the end. )

IMG_0087

Purely Patricia and her date were a big success. Her card reads, “Assemblage Fashion Stylish for People and Spaces.”

IMG_0070

Purely Patricia

IMG_9953

IMG_0039

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This group of friends (above) have been creating themed hats for the parade for over seven years. Yesterday’s theme celebrated iconic New York.  Past motifs included Broadway Shows, The Seven Deadly Sins, Holidays, Superheros and the Zodiac. (Click any photo in the gallery above to enlarge it and turn the series into a slide show.)

IMG_9894

IMG_9782

IMG_0444

IMG_9845

IMG_0537

IMG_0023

A common scene around anyone that was dressed up. A crush of pro and amateur photographers

IMG_9789

IMG_9989

IMG_9747

IMG_0180

IMG_9927

IMG_9821

IMG_0465

IMG_9775

Another group that makes the Easter Parade a yearly group outing. Their theme: A tribute to Pearl River, a beloved store in China Town that recently closed. Jodie Trapani (front and center) is the brainchild and creator of the costumes. Her friends include: Donald Birge, Philip Shubin, Craig Houser, Dawn Hewins-Kelly, Lise Uribe, Laura Sands and Diego Mora. (I have no idea who is who other than Jodi. My bad.)

IMG_0162

IMG_0497

The lumberjack-rabbits. I loved these guys. They were so much fun.

IMG_9830

IMG_0250

IMG_0481

IMG_0322

I have no idea what’s going on here. He’s an Eater egg maybe?

 

Click here for more Rediscovering New York

 

P.S. Follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat at @Insatiabletraveler

68 replies »

Please feel free to comment, contribute or ask questions. I would love to hear from you.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s