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Halloween Parade

Kids in Costume including ‘Lily’s Arcade” for last year’s Coney Island Children’s Halloween Parade, October 27, 2012. Photo © Tricia Vita

This year’s Coney Island Children’s Halloween Parade, a free event for kids up to 15 years of age, is on Saturday, October 26th. The festivities begin at 11am at MCU Park, with magicians, live music, face-painting and costumed characters like Sandy the Seagull and Nathan’s Frankster. The parade will march down the Boardwalk to Luna Park, where registered participants will receive a 4-hour Luna Park wristband and other goodies. The registration form is available here [pdf].

ATZ snapped the above photo of “Lily’s Arcade,” one of the cutest costumes at last year’s parade, but never got to post it since prep for Hurricane Sandy began the next day and Halloween was cancelled in the storm’s aftermath. This year’s 4th annual parade is hosted by Coney Island City Councilman Domenic Recchia, Jr. and the Alliance for Coney Island. The event is produced by Coney Island USA, with the Chief Justice of the Mermaid Parade, Mark Alhadeff, overseeing the Halloween Costume Contest at 12 noon.

The Coney Island parade reminds us of the early days of the now ginormous, 40-year-old Village Halloween Parade. Founded in 1974 by puppeteer Ralph Lee as a Halloween activity for children from the Westbeth Artists Community, where Lee lived, the charming little parade used to wend its way from Bank Street to Washington Square Park, while a small audience of neighborhood residents watched from the curb. Oh, yes, those were the days!

The weekend of October 26 and 27 is also the final spin of the 2013 season for the rides at Coney Island’s amusement parks– Deno’s Wonder Wheel Park, Luna Park (including the Cyclone roller coaster) and Scream Zone– which open at 12 noon. Happy Halloween!

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