There's nothing quite like Coney Island's annual parade of quirky mermaids and sea creatures, antique cars, floats and performers. The pageant, founded in 1983, displays participants' mastery of seaside mythology and wearable art. (You'd be hard-pressed to find a similar event in any other NYC neighborhood.) The procession starts at 1pm, moving east along Surf Avenue from West 21st Street; it turns south on West 10th Street, then heads back west on the boardwalk, ending in front of MCU Park. It draws hundreds of thousands of people, so get there early to snag a prime viewing spot. There is a registration fee to march, but watching the parade is free. After the colorful characters have made their way around, there's still plenty to explore nearby. Check out our guide to Coney Island for the lowdown. For more information, visit coneyisland.com.