Behind the scenes at the 2019 New York Easter Day Parade

On the avenue, Fifth Avenue, the photographers will snap us,And you’ll find that you’re in the rotogravure.
Oh, I could write a sonnet about your Easter bonnet,
And of the girls I’m taking to the Easter parade” 

– Irving Berlin, 1933

What a MARvellous Easter Parade in New York City on Sunday! I was delighted and honored to escort this fab-looking crew.

It’s not usual that you get to see behind the scenes of what goes on during the Parade. So I wanted to share some more candid images that give you a different look at the spectacle.

What’s magical about the parade is not only how it celebrates the day, but also how the riot of colors and flowers ushers in Spring. It really transports you from the everyday to a world of fantasy, whether you walk in it or watch. This year it also transported us to better weather, as it was warmer and sunny in New York but raining and chilly in Westport, Connecticut.

Mar Jennings, center, escorts Dayna Gerring, Helen Powers, Barbara Mathias and Paul Mitchell

Because the only elevated vantage point is on the steps of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, regular viewers show up early to get a good spot before Fifth Avenue is shut down at 10am and the parade begins. And many parade-ers are prepped and ready on the stroke of 10 to show off their looks, and suddenly the street fills. You truly see everything, from classic apparel (like our group) to the bizarre and outlandish.

The pavement transforms into a red carpet where all the wonderful looks are paraded. You can see in these shots that, unique to this type of parade, the spectators are amongst the spectacle itself.

It’s hard not to feel like a celebrity when you can’t manage to walk more than a foot at time before a new group of observers ask you to stop and pose. “Over here, over here!” Or they dash in front and join you while a family member snaps a picture. (Or sometimes even hand you their children!) The street is filed with people from all over the world who have come to gawk in wonder and be enthralled.

We took the opportunity to film it for my TV show and also had a photographer on hand to document it as well. These are some choice images from that day, which I hope help you capture the Spring spirit as well!