Get those mermaid costumes ready: The Coney Island Mermaid Parade is making its return to the streets and boardwalk of Coney Island this weekend for its 36th annual celebration.
In case you haven’t heard of or encountered the Mermaid Parade before, it’s a local tradition that has been around since 1983 to celebrate the summer solstice, as well as the quirky, kitschy history of the island. Expect hordes of people dressed up as mermaids and other sea creatures, along with plenty of body paint.
This year’s parade is being presented by Coney Island USA in partnership with Coney Island Brewery and will take place on Saturday, June 16 beginning at 1 p.m. Each year, the parade crowns a King Neptune and Queen Mermaid; this year, those honors go to author Neil Gaiman and musician Amanda Palmer (who also happen to be married).
As with any parade, you can expect a few traffic disruptions. Thankfully, the organizers at Coney Island USA have provided a Google Map that shows the parade’s route and entry points.
Additionally, the city’s Department of Transportation has put out a list of street closures to look out for as a result of Saturday’s parade; these will be in effect from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.:
- West 21st Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk
- West 22nd Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk
- West 23rd Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk
- Surf Avenue between West 24th Street and West 21st Street
- Surf Avenue between West 21st Street and West 10th Street
- West 10th Street between Surf Avenue and Boardwalk
- Boardwalk between West 10th Street and West 15th Street
- Stillwell Avenue between Surf Avenue and Dead End
For the 21 and over crowd, there will be an official after-party held on the roof deck at Kitchen 21 from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Public transit will be your best option for getting to the parade; be sure to check the MTA’s Weekender map before you head out.