Philadelphians of all ages hopped down South Street Sunday in the 90th annual Easter Promenade.
Sunny skies and the spring-like weather paired nicely with the colorful affair. Hundreds of people lined the neighborhood’s sidewalks as chocolate eggs and other treats were passed out.
Grand Marshal Henri David has been celebrating the Easter holiday with the promenade for 29 years and said he wouldn’t miss it for the world.
“We need to let the whole world know that Philadelphia still very much cooking and happening,” David said. “It’s not how you love or who you love; it’s that you love.”
While David’s a seasoned promenade vet, it was drag queen Brittany Lynn’s first time participating.
“Philly’s like the most inclusive and diverse city that you’re going to find in the U.S., and that’s why I stay here,” Lynn, who started Philadelphia’s Drag Queen Story Time in 2015, said. “It gives a little serotonin boost when events like this are so open.”
Another promenade newbie was WhoaPhat BrassBand, whose music filled South Street and inspired some kids to dance in the street. While it was the group’s first time performing at the event, percussionist Andrew Kruc said he hopes it’s not their last.
“It’s really cool to see this event, you know, have so much energy and it’s something that we’re really excited to be a part of,” Kruc said.
Mafalda Thomas-Bouzy, a moko jumbie stilt walker, said the annual event was not only an opportunity to showcase her Trinidadian heritage — but honor her faith as well.
“This is the newness of life,” Thomas-Bouzy said. “The resurrection as a Christian is really wonderful to represent and walk for Christ and, you know, show champion over adversity.”
This year’s promenade ended with a best dressed contest — each participant hopped away with a goody bag filled with chocolate, winners were awarded gift cards to South Street businesses.
Eggs designed by local artists for the South Street Egg Hunt could still be seen hanging from shop windows. The winner of the Grand Prize Egg Basket will be selected Monday.
Saturdays just got more interesting.