The 32nd Annual Mermaid Parade is just around the corner, kicking off at 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 21.

Antique automobiles, wacky floats and scantily clad mermaids and mermen will roll down Surf Avenue and the boardwalk in New York City’s largest public celebration of art, artists and counterculture. But some are grousing over this year’s choice of honorees as King Neptune and Queen Mermaid.

The event organizers, Coney Island USA, announced recently that the top slots, previously played by Lou Reed, David Byrne, Queen Latifah and other celebrated actors, musicians and notables, will be filled by New York City’s first kids, Dante and Chiara de Blasio.

The mayor’s offspring will be wheeled through the parade in an antique wicker Boardwalk Rolling Chair that dates back to 1923.

“We are extraordinarily honored to have the participation of New York City’s first family in the parade,” said Coney Island USA founder Dick Zigun, who is known as the Mayor of Coney Island. “King Neptune and Queen Mermaid represent the young adults of New York City who are the next generation of visitors to Coney Island and Coney Island USA.”

While many have hailed their selection, we’ve also seen a number of people taking to social media to decry the choice. Some say they’ll be skipping the parade this year because they disagree with the mayor’s politics. Others have argued that the two are hardly creative heroes or counterculture figures.

It’s unlikely the discontent will make much of a difference in attendance at the event, but we wanted to find out what locals think. Are Dante and Chaira de Blasio good choices to celebrate Coney Island’s quirks? Or is this selection just too political for you?

Related posts

  • Amerikka2014

    What a perfect fit for a Coney Island Freakshow. Coney Island USA must be in the running for millions in questionable city financing and this is a way of patronizing the head Communist.

    The druggie twins won’t have far to score the day’s party favors.

  • http://www.sheepsheadbites.com/ Ned Berke

    Okay, let’s be clear here: I won’t be tolerating any nasty, personal attacks against Dante and Chiara. They may be public figures, but it wasn’t by their choice and they’re still kids. Talk about the decision.

  • Barbara

    I like DeBlasio but I don’t see how his kids rate being chosen for this. The King and Queen are supposed to be something of a draw for the parade and this choice doesn’t fit that criterion.

  • Just_Me

    Who selected them for this “honor?” Was there a vote on this?

  • Local Broker

    This is a joke. Why are they deserving of this? The Mayor is a civil servant not a celebrity and neither are his kids.

  • vintagejames

    I like them very much. They are a great fit to honor Brooklyn and where it is going. This is not a political thing. It is for fun. Just get out and enjoy it.

  • Alex

    Does it always have to be celebrities, or politicians, or sports figures or their “offspring” ?
    When is this glorifying and praising of these people and whoever the hell related to them going to end? Honestly so tired of it
    How about just an average Joe who truly loves his Coney Island and helps serve and develop his community.

    • vintagejames

      They are just average Joes. Lovely kids who love Brooklyn and all of NY. They didn’t choose to be celebrities. But they are great ones!

      • Alex

        You just said they are average joes and then the next sentence you say they didn’t choose to be celebrities.
        So what you’re saying is that they are just average kids from the block that get the same treatment as everyone else.
        Obama’s kids are probably in that category too.
        Please cut me a break!!

  • Supporter of Left Handed Rule

    New Yorkers, like most Americans, claim to love the average Joe or Jane, Ralph Kramden-esq working class stiff, but in reality we love our celebrities and faux royalty. I am comfortable with the de Blaisio children, regular folk from our borough and yet bringing a touch of celebrity. In sum, a good choice.

    • Alex

      Speak for yourself, my friend.
      Because of people like you who glorify celebrities they becomes Gods and filthy rich.

      • Supporter of Left Handed Rule

        I do speak for myself, as you know. I have decided, however, that the di Blasio children are demi-celebs and will be forgotten a few years from now when Pop De Blah leaves office. Does anyone know or care what Amy Carter is up to these days? The de Blahs are only famous for a little while so let’s enjoy. They are pop icons for now, I am okay with them being there.

  • Roman

    I think those guys are very cute and fitting for this parade. Of course there will be all the politics involved, which is the world we live in, so it’s good we have both of the sides fighting as always- it keeps the balance. But the kids are very cute for this and I am very okay with them being there.

  • Pingback: Media Rundown: Brooklyn in the News (06.09.14) : Brooklyn Brief

  • Vamp

    I think it’s a great choice and they are from Brooklyn. I like them both very much.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/lisanne001 Lisanne!

    They’re young people and will really get into the spirit of this. That’s a great reason for doing it.

  • Andrew Kent

    Good choice, but for all the controversy it has generated, which really isn’t fair to the kids. My only regret is that the choice wasn’t announced early enough for some entrepreneur to corner the market on afro wigs and floral headbands to sell to the assembled throng. Of course, if CIUSA really wanted to generate controversy, they might have selected Anthony Weiner and Christine Quinn, without whom we would not now be honoring Dante and Chiara deBlasio.

    • PrincessPatmuko

      Andrew Kent,you are kind of on point.”Ha ha ha”U crack me up..Your
      comment is striking and hilarious.Lol” I think there is enough time for entrepreneurs to plan ahead..Most of us will like to emulate Dante
      and Chiara for their unique hair styles.I wanna look like Dante on the
      parade day.Got natural Afro hair.But will probably wear it in a bright
      red color.
      Great idea but It may be even more controversial and interesting to have Anthony Weiner and Christine Quinn as King n queen/Lol” I will raise the idea to D Zigun.The mermaid parade founder

    • Supporter of Left Hand Rule

      Andrew Kent, you are on point. I am confident that many faux Fro’s and Floral headbands will be on display. For the manufacturers of the novelty gear trade, a week’s notice is a lifetime. We’ll party like it’s 1999.

  • guest

    Doesn’t matter to me who it is. But personally, think they should hold a contest. Have ordinary New Yorkers vote for friends, family members. Narrow it down to maybe 5 kings, 5 queens and have us all vote for the favorite.