Back in the days before I even knew LIC existed, there was nothing I anticipated more on the social calendar than the time period between October 31st through the first Sunday of November. That is because the two greatest and most quintessential NYC events occur back to back. The first one is the Village Halloween Parade. This is one of those events that people always say “Oh yeah, I hear it’s great, I’ll definitely make it next year,” and then a decade or two later they’re living in Syosset handing out Snickers when they catch a glimpse of it on NY1 and add it to their list of “ain’t gonna happens.” Despite all the gentrification that has occurred in Manhattan, the parade continually defies convention and has completely retained it’s homemade, non-commercial creativity and no-holds-barred, politically incorrect bawdiness. Yes, it is crowded, but not uncomfortably so, and after the parade the crowd disperses to all corners of the West Village to drink itself silly and act in a manner that only occurs when being in costume and having all facades taken down. As the night wears on, it becomes truly surreal and occasionally strays into deviancy ‘The last thing I remember is being in the White Horse, doing shots of Cuervo with a mummy and Raggedy-Ann, and then my alarm went off for work.’
The next big event is the New York City Marathon. Though ones dreams of playing in the Super Bowl or World Series may be long gone, the Marathon gives you one last shot at glory as big crowds loudly cheer you on. This is the original “Everybody gets a medal” event, but in this case it is well deserved. Or, you can treat it like I do: as if you won free tickets to the Super Bowl and are sitting on the 50-yard line. In other words, it is a rare legitimate excuse to start drinking in the early afternoon, because these runners need your assistance …and you too have been training all year for it.
Fast forward to today and LIC: we have a Halloween parade too, right down Vernon Boulevard, and for many of the parents it too is surreal in a “What am I doing in Queens on Halloween and who are all these midgets?” way. The Marathon also goes right down Vernon Boulevard, and frequently those midgets are still lingering. Yet in most other ways it retains a lot of the character and bonhomie of First Avenue, at least we have held on to something.
The details for the Vernon Boulevard Childrens Halloween Parade on Wednesday October 31st have yet to be released, but last year everyone grouped by the gantries at Gantry Park at 3pm. If you want to see the leaders in the Marathon be on Vernon by 10:15, otherwise the rest of the pack runs strong until around 2pm.
5Pointz Zombie March and Halloween Film Festival – October 27th
PS1’s Halloween Sunday Sessions – October 28th
Mile 15: Where Old-Timers Appreciate the New – great story in the NYT about LIC and the Marathon
New CUNY Law School Building Christened in LIC – at least there building sone new “schools”
The Fate Of 5Pointz: Why One Man May Demolish New York’s Graffiti Mecca – the spin from the graffiti side
Nude Club Owners Halt Liquor License Bid – why did I include this well-tread story? Because it starts with the word “Nude”
Maloney Speaks at LIC/Astoria Chamber of Commerce – rundown of all she’s done for us