Last month it was announced that the annual Greenwich Village Halloween Parade was cancelled this year because of coronavirus concerns and the city's guidelines around gatherings during the pandemic. But parade organizers promised that they were still planning some sort of "surprise" event for the city, and on Thursday they announced what it is: a tiny puppet parade!
“The World Premiere First Ever Double Magnificent Intergalactic MINIATURE Halloween Parade” will stream online at this link on October 31st. Unlike their usual parade, which include giant fantastical puppets constructed upstate, this year's event will feature mini puppets, with designs from 30 artists from throughout the history of the Halloween Parade. The event will be hosted by puppeteer Basil Twist's Zohra, The Giant Spider; Zohra was also the Grand Marshal of last year's parade.
During the video, which will only last around 10 minutes or so, the puppets will be displayed against a moving “cranky” image of NYC, and they will walk past a fantasy rendering of iconic local buildings from the World Trade Center to Harlem. The 30 foot long backdrop was created by Broadway set designer and painter, Richard Prouse. The puppets — which will each get around 15 seconds on screen — will be a part of a special exhibition in 2021 as well.
“With the cancellation of the Parade, we want to ensure that the City remains safe on Halloween night in these difficult times, while giving New Yorkers a special, artistic Halloween treat. Although we will not see the Giant Puppets of years past, the artistic creations of multiple artists will delight thousands of New Yorkers and folks around the world in a MOVIE parade this Halloween,” said longtime parade director Jeanne Fleming.
This year's theme was supposed to be "Big Love," and Billy Porter would have been the Grand Marshal.
Fleming added that all LinkNYC kiosks and some other billboards around the city will show photos from previous parades, the Empire State Building will display Halloween colors, and there's at least one other surprise planned for the actual day.
"A COVID safe 'tricky treat' will happen on Halloween night, stay tuned for hints…but just like the child who comes to your door on Halloween, you won’t know who or what it is until you see it,” she said.
You can see photos from last year's edition of the beloved tradition, whose theme was "wild things." You can also see photos of New Yorkers wearing costumes on the subway on Halloween last year here, our personal favorite tradition.