Thursday, October 18, 2018

Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade is back on; new deal puts the pups in East River Park and on ESPN this Oct. 28

[Photo last year by Stacie Joy]

The Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade will live for its 28th year in a new deal announced last night.

For starters, the parade — a fundraiser for the dog run — is moving to the East River Park amphitheater ... and taking place Sunday, Oct. 28 between noon and 3 p.m. where ESPN will televise the costume action.

In August, organizers were forced to cancel the event after the city's Parks Department required parade organizers to take out a larger $1 million insurance policy to cover the larger crowds that have attended in recent years. (The parade moved from the dog run to the ballfields/field hockey arena in 2016.)

Organizers did not want to lose local control of the event by giving responsibility over to a corporate entity that could hold the insurance policy and potentially retain control over the event's structure and fundraising.

[Photo last year by Stacie Joy]

District 2 City Councilmember's office Carlina Rivera's office released details about the 2018 Dog Parade in a late-night media advisory:

Councilwoman Rivera worked with the dog run supporters and the community organizers at Good Old Lower East Side (GOLES) to come up with a solution, where GOLES would hold the insurance policy and the parade would move to East River Park for 2018. In addition, ESPN will be broadcasting from the parade with host Katie Nolan, and will also be making a $10,000 donation to City Parks Foundation that will go to supporting the Dog Run.

"I am so happy that after months of work with community advocates and dog lovers, the Tompkins Square Park Halloween Dog Parade will be returning to the community for its 28th iteration. This beloved Lower East Side tradition wouldn't be happening this year without the tireless efforts of Good Old Lower East Side and the supporters of the Tompkins Square Park Dog Run, particularly Ada Nieves who has previously co-hosted the parade and took over planning this year."

The Wall Street Journal first reported the news in a story (subscription required) posted on its website last night (it appears in today's print edition).

A Parks Department spokesperson told the Journal: “Costumed puppies [are] a favorite of all New Yorkers, and we are happy that the parade can go on.”


East River Park amphitheater
Between Grand and Jackson streets

Previously on EV Grieve:
The Halloween Dog Parade in Tompkins Square Park this fall has been cancelled


Anonymous said...

Finally. This is what I've been suggesting to others and the city for years. The East River park is the perfect destination for this. Tompkins Square Park is no longer the venue for this event as it as become overrun with thousands of people. I can support this because its no longer in my backyard. As a cat owner, I hope the dog owners have a good time on the 28th.

Neighbor said...

Great news. Really glad they were able to find a way to do this, both for the dog run and the NYC community at large. A lot of people are made very happy by this event and obviously it's a very helpful fundraiser.

Anonymous said...

The photo of the crowd behind the barricade is TERRIFYING. How many chihuahuas could be found shaking among that sweaty, spandex-clad mass of bodies?

7:38 is a nice cat person than I am, I guess, because to me the very problem at the heart of this event is that it's all about the dog OWNERS having a good time. I hope the PUPPERS have a good time on the 28th.

—Ave A cat lady who can only muster a "Good lord, ESPN?" at this latest news

noble neolani said...

The last time I attempted to check out the parade I was horrified by the mobs of people and how the soul of a wacky fun local event was swallowed by big corporate sponsors. To the organizers of the parade beware of who you sell your soul to.
With news of ESPN televising the parade the parade will bring hoards of tourists into the neighborhood each year going forward, a dog lover Santa Con. Who knew operating a dog run would need corporate handouts?

Anonymous said...

Where exactly in the park will this take place?

Anonymous said...

10K psssshhhhhh ESPN got off cheap.

Hey, let's ruin East River Park and set a precedent that that's the go to place for enormous crowds etc. Let's make it a mini-Randall's Island.

This event can GFI.

Anonymous said...

I really love when people who openly admit that they don't even participate in an event make snap judgments about the treatment of animals at that very event. Humans AND dogs love this event. Yes, it had outgrown the park in recent years, unfortunately. But now it's moving, and guess what - you don't have to be salty about it anymore! Unless y'all just being salty cause it's the only thing you like to do.

This is a tradition going back almost 30 years. You complain any time when the neighborhood's heritage is threatened, and then you also complain when it gets restored. Incredible.

Anonymous said...

@10:32 AM At the amphitheater which is just south of the wburg bridge.

Anonymous said...

So we can assume that a) 11:11 has taken a poll of Dog Parade–participating dogs and has somehow interpreted their feelings, or b) 11:11 IS a dog and has been chosen, by dog committee, to speak for all other Dog Parade dogs, and has somehow learned how to leave blog comments.

—Ave A cat lady who doesn't even try to speak for my OWN cats, let alone the world's

Anonymous said...

Why isn't there a Halloween event for cats? Why do cat dads and moms get no recognition or festivities? :(

Giovanni said...

This was the only sensible solution, and the amphitheater is the perfect place to stage the competition for a TV broadcast. I just hope the organizers realize that ESPNs other big local broadcast is the annual Hot Dog Eating Contest from Coney Island. I just hope the dogs make it out alive.

noble neolani said...

Not a dog owner but from my observations sniffy butt and just about anything else is considered fun and a good day for a dog. Since modern dogs no longer perform work duties outside of highly trained service dogs, what's wrong with putting home made of store bought costumes on them? It may be undignified to be dress as "pizza rat" considering it being a meme from a few years ago but I doubt any dog has suffered physical or emotion trauma for wearing a costume.

My concern has more to do with local groups sucking up to corporate sponsors to raise money for their event, cause etc.... There is no turning back once you sign on the dotted line and don't be surprised when Petco ask to see the costumes of the participating animals to make sure they "reflect the values of Petco". No such thing as free money, big legal strings are attached.

Anonymous said...

Most of the commentators on this blog are of the same bland, whining flavor and I kick myself every time for reading. I'd be just as happy if all comments were disallowed and just report the news. That said, congratulations to the hard working organizers and long live the TS Halloween Dog parade.

Unknown said...

THIS explains Corlears Hook Ferry terminal

noble neolani said...

@1:22 PM

okay, nobody's opinion matters except your, got it.
Yours truly,
just another whinning commenter

MrNiceGuy said...

The EVGrumps are in full gear today!! They whined about it taking over the neighborhood. The parade was then moved to a HUGE public events space, with plenty of room for everyone, a full mile from the park.

...and they still complain!

My dog absolutely loves the parade. He is incredibly social and loves people, dogs and any form of attention he gets. Let's let the animals speak for themselves! It may be hard for a cat person to understand, but dogs can be social beings. If your dog doesn't like crowds, don't bring your dog to the parade -- it's pretty simple.

Anonymous said...

"Why isn't there a Halloween event for cats? Why do cat dads and moms get no recognition or festivities?"

12:21, black cats are the stars of Halloween!


As for us cat ladies and cat daddies, we do get our own form of recognition: the self-recognition of dignity.

—Ave A cat lady who feels that loose, hand-knit scarves are the only thing one should attempt to dress a cat in if you value your life

Anonymous said...

"If your dog doesn't like crowds, don't bring your dog to the parade -- it's pretty simple."

It is pretty simple, and yet there are about a million yahoos doing it anyway. You cannot look at those crowd photos and tell me all of the pups, wearing uncomfortable and view-blocking getups, are happy being in such a place.

While I'm sure YOUR dog is having a swell and not at all anxiety-producing time every single second of this event, the day is stressful for PEOPLE, so I can only imagine that it is equally if not more stressful for many dogs—who are as a species known to dislike crowds and excessive noise. Why is this so hard to understand? No one is trying to ban your terrifying event, we're just giving a nonparticipant perspective.

—Ave A cat lady who has actually met and loved many dogs ... you know we're allowed to do that, right?

Joe said...

And another beloved East Village gathering bites the dust! It's a shame that the East Village that was once known for art and culture is rapidly becoming a retirement village filled with sensitive old ladies who enjoy complaining.

Anonymous said...

Joe, this event hasn't been cancelled. It's been EXPANDED. Try reading the article first, bro. Plus, it's still in the EV! So I don't know what you're complaining about. Perhaps the only "old lady" here is YOU.

—Ave A cat lady who has many decades ahead of her in which to collect cats and complain

Anonymous said...

Cats differ in stark comparison to dogs. Mine gives me quite a fuss when I have to put him in a carrier for our annual vet visit. Something such as this would give him a little heart attack. He would bite me hard if I tried to put a silly costume on his body. I think most cats freak out when there are crowds and noises. They almost put their noses up to something like this.

Dogs are different and probably friendlier. Most of them love things like this because they are social creatures. I am relieved its been transferred to East River Park. The amphitheater is a solid choice. There is plenty of room unlike Tompkins Park, where I felt claustrophobic and overwhelmed during the parades of the past. Last year was a shit show. There must have been two to three thousand people there. That becomes a health and safety issue. Its hard to believe how this event that began as a small affair years ago segued into a landmark city event.

I can't wait to see how ESPN produces this. Happy Halloween!

Joe said...

Expanded? Haha, nice recharacterization...You just want your quaint little private park to use like it's your own back yard--But guess what, it's not yours!

What do you think's gonna happen with the corporate "expansion" of all the thousands who visit Starbucks, Target and Essex Crossing shops? You think they'll also get kicked out when too many people show up?

Sad to see gentrification squashing the soul in our neighborhood--and sadder to hear your entitled rants...woof, woof!

Anonymous said...

This is for Joe: Stop being a bully!

PJ said...

More of a cat person myself but a friend dragged me one year to the Dachshund Octoberfest in Washington Square. It was low key genteel fun and the hounds seemed fine in their little bun costumes. They even gave out free hot dogs.

I've gone back a few times since my friend passed away. Different breed of event I guess.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness. What is with all the mean comments on this thread? Are we adults or children here?

Some people prefer dogs and some people such as myself prefer cats. It doesn't matter. There should be no competition amongst us for whom is the better pet. I am delighted this event will march forward in a much larger space. Especially now with the several entrance closures of Tompkins Park; this would be a horrible idea for it to be held there.

Its astonishing how many attend this event. How nice for our community to come together and celebrate life with their beautiful dogs during autumn.

Lastly, be nice and respectful to cat owners & lovers. We matter too. Just in a different way.


Anonymous said...

Hell yeah 9:24!

Joe, I only go to Tompkins Square Park when I'm relapsing and need to pee through a bench in daytime. xoxo

—Ave A cat lady who is nowhere near as enlightened as 9:24

Rob Warren said...
This comment has been removed by the author.