Durst pledges to keep Halloween parade alive

September 22, 2013 10:00AM

Real estate developer Douglas Durst just became the most significant patron of the annual NYC Village Halloween Parade. Last year Hurricane Sandy disappointed fancy-dress enthusiasts when it interrupted the longstanding festival – now in its 40th year. The storm also left the parade with a major funding shortage and that is where Durst stepped in with a $5,000 donation.

Usually one of the parade’s largest sources of income is donations from the crowd, which are collected by volunteers in butterfly nets. But since the parade was cancelled just 12 hours before the event was scheduled to start and no money could be collected, the organizers turned to the virtual crowd, according to Crain’s.

Last week the parade launched a Kickstarter campaign seeking to raise $50,000. Thus far more than 80 different backers have contributed a combined $11,000 to the parade — $5,000 of which came from Durst, chairman of the Durst Organization.

“It’s a great New York tradition,” Durst told Crain’s.

Each year the 20-block parade attracts more than 2 million spectators and some 70,000 participants. [Crain’s]Christopher Cameron