There were ravers and Bollywood-ers, Bolivian Tinkuses and hip hop kids, belly dancers and blissed-out hippies, cheerleaders, hula hoopers, disco boys, stilt walkers, Indonesians, Albanians, Armenians, Koreans, waackers, aerobics masters, Mexican Carnivalers, small children, half-naked adults, on and on and on. Seriously: yesterday's eight annual Dance Parade in Manhattan had to have been the most wildly diverse parade on the planet.

The only thing the nearly 9,000 marchers had in common, of course, is that they all love to dance. Which is exactly what every one of these 150+ different groups and troupes did for the mile-long route down Broadway and University from 20th Street to 8th Street, then over to Tompkins Square Park, where many of them proceeded to dance some more.

As you can imagine, with this many people strutting their stuff for this many blocks, the Dance Parade is not a short event. In fact, after three hours of fun in the sun there were certain photographer types who needed to get home, even if there were apparently "many
more" dancers still to come.

And if next year you want to check out the Dance Parade, but are wary of the big crowds which can make such events unpleasant, well.. don't be. Despite heavy concentrations of spectators around Union Square and the grandstand at 8th and University, there were long stretches of the route that remained pretty much clear throughout the afternoon.

Fortunately, whatever lack of spectators there may have been in certain spots did absolutely nothing to dim the enthusiasm of the dancers. The music was loud, the energy contagious, the party non-stop.