Get us in your inbox

Photograph: Shutterstock

Everything you need to know about the Coney Island Mermaid Parade tomorrow

By Zoe Butenhoff

Get ready to grab those pearly tops and sequined scales for the 37th annual Coney Island Mermaid Parade!

The decades-old Coney Island tradition is a yearly spectacle featuring over-the-top costumes, floats and other decorations. Tomorrow, thousands of glitterati will gather to celebrate the ancient mythology of the waters near one of the best beaches in NYC.

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the Coney Island Mermaid Parade

This year's procession will be lead by none other than the elected King Neptune and Queen Mermaid—who, this year, will be singers Arlo and Nora Guthrie. (The pair are the first royals to have grown up on Coney Island’s Mermaid Avenue.) Organized by nonprofit Coney Island USA, the event will surely constitute one of the best events in June. So kickoff the summer swimming season by reveling in the fantastical fishiness of mermaid life as thousands of your fellow New Yorkers ride the tide at this iconic Brooklyn attraction.

When and where is the Mermaid Parade?
The Mermaid Parade will take place on Saturday, June 22, 2019 at 1pm. The parade will start at West 21st Street and Surf Avenue, travel east to West 10th Street, continue on Surf Ave. and the Boardwalk, and then end at the Steeplechase Plaza. To snag the perfect spot to view the oceanic spectacle, get there at 11am. At approximately 4pm, when the main procession has finished, parade founder Dick D. Zigun will lead the King Neptune and Queen Mermaid from the review stand at 19th Street to the beach for the official Beach Ceremony, which indicates the beginning of the summer swimming season! If you are eager to get as close to the Coney Island royalty as possible, become a Mermaid Parade Judge for $200 and gain entry to the judge’s viewing stand—complete with an official Judge t-shirt.

Will there be any street closures from the parade?
How else would the King and Queen be safely escorted to their sea foam palace? In other words, yes. The following streets will be closed from 1pm to 5pm: West 21st Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk, West 22nd between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk, West 23rd Street between Surf Avenue and Dead End, Surf Avenue between West 21st Street and West 24th Street, Surf Avenue between West 21st Street and West 10th, West 10th Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk, and Stillwell Avenue between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk.

How can I participate in the Coney Island Mermaid Parade?
Anyone and everyone is welcome to morph into a mermaid for the day, but online registration has ended so make sure to bring a couple of clams to pay for entry on the day of the parade. Rates vary according to your age and if you decide to bring a decorated vehicle like, you know, a pearl-bedazzled antique car or a trident-themed motorized float. Or whatever. 

What if it rains?
As mermaids and sea creatures, we welcome both the sunshine and the water. But this year, the weather prediction is hot, sunny and dry. It's the perfect weather to tan those tails!

Is there an afterparty?
Trading legs for a fishtail is a hot ticket and, unfortunately the afterparty, The Mermaid Parade Ball, is completely sold out. But that shouldn’t stop you from celebrating your scales: There are a number of Mermaid Parade parties being held at different venues in Brooklyn, such as ATLANTIS: Mermaid Parade Afterparty at one of our favorite bars, House of Yes. So go ahead and say yes to a night of fishy fun with tickets starting at $35.


    Popular on Time Out

      Latest news

        Read next