Thousands of onlookers and participants gathered on West 21st Street and Surf Avenue in Coney Island on Saturday, June 16 to take part in NYC’s Annual Mermaid Parade.
One of New York’s biggest summer parades, 2018 marked 36 years for the event that celebrates ancient mythology of the sea. Marchers dazzled the crowds dressed as mermaids, merpeople and various sea creatures as they walked the parade route that travels down West 10th Street to the boardwalk, ending at Steeplechase Plaza.
This year, event organizers nominated singer-songwriter Amanda Palmer of the singing duo Dresden Dolls as their royal Queen Mermaid. Palmer was joined by her husband, American Gods writer Neil Gaiman as King Neptune.
“We are very excited to have Amanda Palmer & Neil Gaiman lead the parade, as this years Queen Mermaid & King Neptune” Parade and Coney Island USA Founder Dick Zigun shared. “And, we are thrilled to have our good friends at the Coney Island Brewery as presenter and Kitchen 21 as our co-presenter.”
Palmer and Gaiman led the parade excited and smiling decked out in their dazzling ocean-themed attire as they were rolled in an antique wicker Boardwalk Chair. A tradition for the Queen Mermaid and King of Neptune. Their young son sat in the wicker chair alongside them waving at the crowd.
— Amanda Palmer (@amandapalmer) June 16, 2018
After making their way through the streets with sea creatures, bands, antique cars and colorful floats trailing behind, Palmer and Gaiman led marchers to the beach where Mermaid Parade Founder Dick D. Zigun officiated the annual beach ceremony to officially open the ocean for summer swimming on Coney Island.
Following the annual Mermaid Parade, many attended the Mermaid Parade Ball hosted by Kitchen 21.