The West Indian Day Parade, which usually attracts upwards of a million people along its Eastern Parkway route in Brooklyn, was met with a steady rain on Monday.
“It seems more active than past years. people are having fun in the rain— we don’t mind it," Carla Adrian, a Crown Heights resident, observed. Adrian said she also didn't mind the security measures, which have been enhanced in recent years.
As usual, the politicians kicked things off, with Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Senator Chuck Schumer, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Attorney General Letitia James, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, City Comptroller Scott Stringer, and Public Advocate Jumaane Williams all on hand. One good thing about the rain is that it got these bigwigs to step off on time, and hustle through the route. Never has the start of this event felt so organized and efficient.
After that it was a pure party all afternoon, with some stretches of dry weather. As usual, the Parkway was filled with resplendent costumes, glorious floats, stilt-walkers, masqueraders, twerking and daggering. Yes, it was too wet for Johnson to do his usual parade dance routine, but he did twerk a little:
Trucks rolled along blasting music at astounding volumes, and oil-soaked revelers from J'Ouvert stuck around and kept the party going.
The NYPD was also on hand and up to their old kettling-net tricks, controlling the overall flow, and shadowing the rowdiest trucks along the entire route. The police did not immediately have information on whether there were any arrests, but there was at least one arrest for gun possession before J'Ouvert. At least two officers were also "grinded on" during the parade.
Additional reporting by Jake Offenhartz and Jen Chung.