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Village Halloween Parade 2017 guide: What you need to know

Frankenstein's Monster is alive at this year's Village Halloween Parade.

It's been 200 years since Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" debuted and warned society of the dangers of toying with Mother Nature, but on Halloween night, creation will be celebrated.

This year's parade theme will encourage New Yorkers to get creative and give into the urge to alter the natural, according to Jeanne Fleming, the artistic and producing director of the parade.

The theme, "A Cabinet of Curiosities, an Imaginary Menagerie," stems from the idea of Frankenstein's Monster, and that people will recreate themselves as imaginary beings for the night, she said.

"The hope is that people create crazy things," she said in an interview. "It's really about the individual imagination. You can make it up."

Large puppets always lead the parade, and this year's will literally turn heads. Each one will be made up of large, square pieces with different body parts on them. On cue, each block will spin every 10 minutes to make a new creature with mixed up parts. The frames can change to make as many as 4,800 different images, Fleming said.

"We want everyone to experience the wonder of transformation," she added. "By the end of the parade you actually are a mermaid because that's the way everybody's has been treating you. It's a big 'yes' to everybody to come as you wish you were or what you'd like to be."

The parade starts at Spring Street at 7 p.m. and continues down Sixth Avenue to 16th Street, ending at 11 p.m.

Those walking in the parade are asked to show up at Canal Street and Sixth Avenue between 6:30 and 9 p.m. Fleming encouraged parade marchers to interact with the crowd: "Play with the audience," she said. "Look at the crowd because it will create an atmosphere of play."

To make the night memorable, here's more of what you should look out for:

Expect political statements this year

There weren't many political getups during last year's
Photo Credit: Village Halloween Parade

There weren't many political getups during last year's parade because "it was almost like people wanted to forget about the election," according to Fleming, but this year may yield some big statements. So far, she's heard that a group will be participating in the parade as the "Emperor's New Clothes," based off the tale about the arrogant emperor who unwittingly walks around naked because he thinks his new duds are invisible to those beneath him. Another group will march as President Donald Trump's wives.

Look out for 'The King of Pop'

Michael Jackson is still part of the celebration,
Photo Credit: Village Halloween Parade

Michael Jackson is still part of the celebration, especially after a new album, "Michael Jackson SCREAM," was released on Sept. 29. New York City-based engineers will march with a large replica of the King of Pop's face that will break apart and get put back together to some of his dance tunes like "Thriller," Fleming said.

Grand Marshal Anjelica will ride on a New Orleans-style float

The parade encourages young and upcoming artists, and
Photo Credit: Anjelica

The parade encourages young and upcoming artists, and this year is no different. Anjelica, a singer based in Williamsburg, will be grand marshal and kick off the parade by riding on a float created by artist Alexei Kazantsev. The piece will incorporate a New Orleans style, according to the parade's website. "I am so thrilled to be the Grand Marshall [sic] of the Halloween Parade," Anjelica said in a statement. "My music is all about love, magic, and being true to oneself. I can't wait to share the love on my favorite holiday."

There will be an after party at Slake NYC

The festivities will keep going at Slake NYC
Photo Credit: Village Halloween Parade

The festivities will keep going at Slake NYC starting at 9 p.m. Enter yourself into a $2,500 costume contest, twirl or groove on four "haunted" dance floors and see acrobats and fire displays before your eyes. For adults 21 and older. ($35, 9 p.m. 251 W. 30th St., ticketweb.com)

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