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Easter Parade & Easter Bonnet Festival 2024

One of the best Easter traditions in the Big Apple, where New Yorkers show off their creativity

Dates: April 20, 2025

Easter Parade & Easter Bonnet Festival
Easter Parade & Easter Bonnet Festival
Easter Parade & Easter Bonnet Festival

The Easter Parade & Easter Bonnet Festival is a vibrant and spontaneous event that takes place every year in New York City. On Easter Sunday, Fifth Avenue (from 49th St to 57th St) is closed for traffic. The fun in Midtown Manhattan begins at about 10 am and lasts throughout the afternoon till 4 pm. The promenade of weird, funny, and inventive costumes attracts crowds of spectators.

You might wonder how a parade with such a relatively short route, measuring less than half a mile, can last virtually a whole day. The reason is this celebration is only called a parade, while, in fact, it's more of an informal costumed street extravaganza. People can join at any moment or stop whenever they like for some food or shopping. Anyways, some rules still apply.

Bonnets are, of course, essential and irreplaceable for parade-goers. You'll be amazed at their oddness and creativity. You can marvel at hats topped with piles of eggs, lots of flowers, or even live animals like rabbits or pet snakes! Frames, carrots, flower pots, or bird cages are popular too. Some hats are tiny, and some are huge, ​but all are worth seeing because imagination has no limits!

The tradition of holding Easter Parades has been observed for more than 130 years in New York. Although no floats or music bands existed in the 1880s, women still wore their most beautiful hats and clothes. Streets and churches were decorated with flowers, and the mood was just as joyful as nowadays. In the 20th century, the New York City Easter Parade was one of the largest in the USA, with equal emphasis on fashion and religious rituals. As years have flown by, the Easter Parade has become more and more extravagant and colorful.

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin