These are some of the photos that I took earlier today during the Easter bonnet parade/festival on Fifth Avenue. A section of Fifth Avenue between 49th to 57th Streets was closed to traffic for the annual festivities. Over the years, the Easter bonnet has evolved from a simple decorated hat to outrageous expression of creativity or social and political conviction. To me, it seemed more like a street costume party than an Easter parade. An Easter bonnet is supposed to represent the tail-end of a tradition of wearing new clothes on Easter Sunday in harmony with the renewal of the year and the promise of spiritual renewal and redemption. The "Easter bonnet" was fixed in popular culture by Irving Berlin, whose frame of reference was the Easter parade in New York City, a festive walkabout that made its way down Fifth Avenue from St. Patrick's Cathedral:
"In your Easter bonnet with all the frills upon it, You'll be the grandest lady in the Easter parade."