The annual Coney Island Mermaid Parade ushered in summer on Saturday (6/22), a day after Friday's Summer Solstice. Now in its 37th year, the Mermaid Parade is a celebration of the season, creativity, nautical mythology, fertility, and letting ones freak flag fly, and around 3000 people took part this year, including 12 marching bands. The crowds of spectators numbered an estimated near-850,000, many in costumes just as wild, elaborate, or barely there as those the marchers were wearing. Along with lots of merpeople sporting fins, we saw lots of body and face jewels, glitter, sequins, pasties, seashell bikini tops, and body paint, as well as troupe of Handmaid mermaids in red, a couple of goth merpeople, various sea creatures including sharks and crabs, pirates, a group of Green New Deal-supporting merpeople, "Narwhals for NARAL," a "Mermaid Transit Authority," "Surfragette City," and more.

Arlo and Nora Guthrie led the procession as 2019's Mermaid Royalty. I unfortunately missed them, but lots of pictures from the day (some are NSFW) are in the gallery above.

Originally published Jun 22, 2019 @ 22:46
photos by Amanda Hatfield

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