The Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade is a Halloween celebration, costume parade and competition…for, well, dogs and their parents. Yep, you read that right. Through 2017, the annual event was held at Tompkins Square Park, for which it is named. However, due to alleged insurance and overcrowding issues back in 2018, the venue is now the East River Park Amphitheater. Contestants have the opportunity to earn bragging rights and compete for thousands of dollars in prizes.
Twenty-eight years ago, the inaugural Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade began as a small, casual, low-key event held by neighborhood locals. It wasn’t just a Halloween celebration, though, it was also the after-party for a hard-fought community victory: the successful launch of the city’s first dog run. From there, word spread and the event grew in popularity every year thereafter. The number of participants (now in the hundreds), along with spectators (now in the thousands), have markedly increased year after year.
Nothing is off-limits at the Tompkins Square Dog Parade. You’ll see dogs and their owners dress up as pop culture icons, historical figures, politicians and much, much more. So visit one the year’s premier local Halloween events and get your phones and cameras ready to capture this one-of-a-kind New York City event.
You can find more information about the parade and competition here.
You can also get a bird’s-eye view of the parade from our visits in 2018 here.