The West Indian Day Parade highlights Brooklyn’s Caribbean Culture
While most of the U.S. looks forward to Labor Day for the three-day weekend, Brooklyn closes the end of Summer with a bang by showcasing the borough’s multicultural foot print. The highly anticipated fete typically begins Friday evening and runs through the weekend until all of Monday. You can expect larger than life costumes, miles of amazing Caribbean street food and loads of dancing. It is the best time of the year to get a sense for Brooklyn’s authentic diversity. Haven’t been to one yet?
Here are some useful tips for your first West Indian Day Parade:
- Wear comfortable sneakers – the ultimate amateur move is wearing sandals, flip flops, boots, heels. Don’t do it, your feet and back will thank you later.
- Remember the 2:1 ratio – 2 nutcrackers for 1 bottle of water.
- Come on an empty stomach – and if you find a good vendor stick to it. An easy way to tell the food is good is to inspect the rice. If the rice looks legit, you can count on the food.
- Be ready to dance – A LOT.
- Be ready for a CROWD – especially when the Haitian float comes by. Its the last float on the parkway and its known for “SHUTTING IT DOWN”.
- Rep your set – your BBF is Trini? Got a brother-in-law from Panama? Your go-to barber is from Dominican Republic? Show them love by donning their national flag to the parade. I showed love to my boyfriend / second family and repped Jamaica for a squeeze (but it was Haiti ALL DAY after).