Easter in New York means springtime weather, pastel colors, egg hunts and the start of that lovely time of year when you can enjoy all the amazing things to do outside in NYC. Easter festivities are a highlight of all the things to do in spring, and the Easter Bonnet Parade & Festival is one of the highlights of Easter in NYC.
This parade is all about the hats—lavishly decorated, from the exquisite to the outlandish. Anyone is welcome to join, just show up near St. Patrick’s Cathedral at 10am on Easter Sunday to watch or saunter with the group up Fifth Avenue. The tradition dates back to the 1870s, so you might even see some participants in period costumes. But the highlight is the elaborate bonnets, some of which are truly over-the-top.
If you want to participate, put on your creative thinking cap and get started on your work of chapeaux art ASAP. Otherwise, the Easter Parade & Bonnet Festival makes for a fun start to Easter, after which you can head to one of the best brunches in the city for some springtime sustenance and take part in other Easter events in the city.
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When is the Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival?
The parade begins at 10am on Easter Sunday. This year, Easter is on April 9, 2023. Make sure your bonnet is ready in time! Activities run until about 4pm.
The tradition dates back to the 1870s, according to NYC's tourism agency.
Where is the Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival?
The parade marches north on Fifth Avenue from 49th Street up to 57th Street. For the best views, head to St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Fifth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets).
How do you march in the Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival?
All revelers are welcome for this free festivity! The only requirement is a bonnet, the more whimsical the better.