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A View of Halloween in New York City

A photographer ventures through New York City as people celebrate Halloween 2021 with costumes, parties, and parades a year after the coronavirus pandemic cancelled last year’s celebrations.

This year in New York City, Halloween weekend kicked off with pouring rain. I watched as the sky turned black around 9 pm on Wednesday and raindrops started to splatter onto the sidewalk. But the rain didn’t seem to stop anyone’s Halloween plans. After all, this was the year after the pitiful experience of lockdown-induced virtual Halloween, and New York City was ready to celebrate with scary intensity.

New Yorkers watch the Halloween parade from a rooftop.

New York is getting ready for the Halloween parade.

Rooftops are always a privileged point of view.

On the street, people also gather around the parade.

A stranger met at the Halloween party in New York.

Alma. In 20 years of living in New York after immigrating from Puerto Rico, this was only the second time she had come to the parade.

Two policemen or two men dressed as policemen, who knows, in New York

A man sitting on a parking meter.

In New York City, where outlandishness is sewn into the fabric of daily life, I saw some especially strange costumes. The winner was a man walking a harness that was supposedly attached to an invisible dog. Everyone finds an original idea for Halloween, sometimes even weeks in advance. Young and old alike make the same effort.

A man walks his dog in a spider costume on 6th Avenue in Manhattan.

A man dressed as a joker on the street in New York.

Spectators in the streets of New York attending the Halloween parade.

People watch the parade on 6th Avenue in Manhattan.

A dog in a New York street.

A child tries to elevate his point of view by clinging to a scaffold.

The "trick or treat" tradition remains one of the symbols of Halloween.

A DJ at a party in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

Two women talk at the same party in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

Bendo, Camille, Cathleen and Vinciane observe Manhattan from Vinciane's roof on 6th Avenue.

For more of Ismail Ferdous' signature images and more information about his work, visit the VU's agency website.

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