After two months of following The Rockaway Mermaid Brigade around in an attempt to relay vital information about Poseidon’s Parade to the Rockaway masses, we have finally arrived at the big event: This Saturday at high noon, Rockaway’s beloved board-less-walk will be transformed into a living and breathing art exhibit.

Sea creatures, Greek deities, recycled costume creators, musicians, dancers, pets, children, fully grown children, public stretchers, Vic Thrillers, fantastical floats, and a whole bunch of Rockaway freaks and families alike will follow Whalemina down the boardwalk, starting at the Beach 106th concession, in a public display of Rockawayness. As a community of summer addicts, we will rise again one more time to put summer 2019 to bed.

If preliminary forecasts are correct, Hurricane Humberto will also be blessing the peninsula with 4-6 foot waves, setting the perfect backdrop for the annual end of summer strut. In this way, Poseidon himself will be flexing his muscles for surfers and spectators alike. Surfer dudes should show gratitude to the brigade for pleasing the surf gods. After a dismal summer display, Poseidon has been rewarding surfers with several amazing late summer swells. 

Five people who will not be gazing at the surf are this year’s judges. As in years past, the judges will be positioned on colorfully decorated lifeguard chairs with their backs to the ocean. Members of the brigade told me that there is a top-secret formula for judge selection, but I have yet to see a pattern emerge. All I know is that no one ever gets to be a judge twice, and to quote a sign in  old Rincon, PR surf bar, “We are all here because we are not all there.”

Judges tend to represent various elements of New York City's beach party capital. This year’s judges are: Chris Nelson, Cedric “Ceddy Ced” Ced, Bill Gehlhaus, Tara Vasselmen, and Noreen  Mulvanerty. While some expressed concern about publishing these names, The Brigade insists that the identities be made public. “How will people present the perfect bribes if they don’t even know who they are bribing?” Brigade captain Geoff explained in a snarky quip. In keeping with Coney Island Mermaid Parade precedent, the judges expect bribes. As in most cases, art imitates life.

As previously mentioned, the parade will be led by Katie Pasta and Bryan Fraser, who were crowned king and queen of this winter’s prom. The soon-to-be newlyweds will get things started. Caracas will have The Beasy Band providing the perfect sound for the pre-parade panicky parade participants as they register last-minute or check in.

At the judging area, the insanity will be narrated by Jimmy Dowd, the official MC, and foot traffic will be strictly controlled by the bodacious brigade babe, Bettina. 

After the parade there will be a family style fair on Beach 95th Street, where the parade ends. DJ Kuff Daddy Dollars, will get the party going as a variety of activities and entertainment dazzles the plaza. There will be face painters, dancers, and performance artists galore. Whalemina will also be present for photos. This will also be the location for the announcing of the winners and the presentation of the amazing homemade trophies.

This free event is presented by Poseidon’s Parade Inc., who thanks the community for its continued support of this yearly event. The official after-party, presented by Rockapulco Gold, will be at Rustwoods at 5 p.m. and will feature a sing along acoustic session featuring Bobby Butler, Danny Mulvanerty, and The Campion Brothers opening up for Squid. There will also be live music from Solshyne at Low Tide Bar, and Blac Rabbit at Caracas. (I heard some rumors going around about a certain underwater vehicle of a certain hue being included in the act).


Please register for the parade on PoseidonsParade.com. This year is shaping up to be a doozy!