The Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade has been canceled due to a lack of funding, but one dog owner is hoping to save the beloved tradition.
The parade, in its 28th year, was scheduled to take place on Oct. 20 this year at the East Village park.
“The Parks Dept is asking for a large insurance & liability policy in order to hold the event this year — and we simply don’t have the funds or sponsor willing to provide it,” organizers wrote in a Facebook post Wednesday.
Starting in 2017, the parade required a contract because of its size and potential impact on the park, a Parks Department spokeswoman said. Part of that contract, which is needed for all events at city parks with more than 500 people, requires a Certificate of Insurance valued at $1 million.
The organizers of the parade were able to provide the COI last year, the spokeswoman said.
“Puppies donning the cutest costumes is something we and all New Yorkers have looked forward to each Halloween since the parade’s inception — this year is no different,” the Parks Department said in a statement.
After seeing that the parade was canceled, 35-year-old Sunnyside resident Therese Moriarty reached out to the organizers to find out how much money they needed and started a GoFundMe page with a goal of $15,000.
Moriarty, who has brought her 4-year-old Shih Tzu to the parade for the past few years, said it’s always a fun event that brings people together.
“It not only attracts local visitors, but people from all over the world travel to go see it,” she said. “One thing we can all agree on is dogs dressed up is really cute.”
The parade has raised more the $200,000 over the years for the Tompkins Square dog run, organizers said.
“We are also leaving the dog park with an endowment at City Parks Foundation for its maintenance and upkeep for the next 10 years,” they wrote in the Facebook post.