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New York City Village Halloween Parade Thousands Short of Fundraising Goal

by Kelsey Schappell
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asterix611, Flickr

Parade organizers need to raise $15,000 by Oct. 21.

Halloween night in New York City's Greenwich Village is typically marked by dancing skeletons and goblins on Sixth Avenue, leading the famous Village Halloween Parade. Jeanne Fleming, Artistic and Producing Director of the event, has been in charge of the parade for 33 years. She says there's nothing quite like it.

"There’s nothing on the scale on this event, and really very few things that happen even remotely like it, where everyone can express their creativity and jump in," she said.

The Halloween parade is turning 40 this year -- that is, if it can reach its fundraising goal by Oct. 21. The parade is $15,000 short on funding after Superstorm Sandy hit New York and canceled the event last year. In past years they’ve used butterfly nets to collect cash from spectators and participants, but that wasn’t possible last October. 

On top of that, organizers are buying insurance in case they’re forced to cancel again. Fleming says it’s the single largest expense in the parade's budget this year.

But she adds the parade is a beloved event for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers, and a small contribution from each could go a long way. 

"Normally we have around 60,000 people who march in the parade, and then a couple million watch it live. If we got a dollar from everyone, we'd have enough money to do the parade for the next 10 years," she said.

This year, the parade will include a “Revival Float” to honor the heroes of Sandy and serve as a reminder of the parade’s resurgence.

The Rudin Family Foundation and the Association for a Better New York have agreed to match the $15,000 fundraising goal. Others who want to donate can do so at kickstarter.com up until Oct. 21. 

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