EAST VILLAGE, Manhattan -- The beloved Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade has been cancelled this year after organizers say they don’t have the funds.
The event has seen costumed pups parade through the park for the past 28 years, raising more than $200,000 for the green space. But this year, the organizers said they have not been able to secure a sponsor, forcing them to cancel.
The organization posted a statement on Facebook Wednesday.
"Although the parade has grown over the past 28 years, it has always been the creation of a small group of volunteers from the dog park," the post read.
The city's Parks Department apparently wanted a "large insurance and liability policy" in order to hold the event, the organizers said.
It's a huge upset to Therese Moriarty, whose pup Hugo has attended the parade as a surfer, pilot and a sailor over the years.
“There just had to be a solution around this," she said. "The fact the parade wasn’t happening this year just wasn’t acceptable."
After news spread about the parade's demise, Moriarty started a GoFundMe to help save it. The fund's goal is $15,000. By Thursday afternoon, it has raised less than $900.
The parade's organizers said they hope the event will return "in some form in the future."
"We are also leaving the dog park with an endowment at City Parks Foundation for it’s maintenance and upkeep for the next 10 years," the organizers said.
In a statement, the NYC Parks Department said, “ Puppies donning the cutest costumes is something we and all New Yorkers have looked forward to each Halloween since the parade’s inception—this year is no different. We are happy to sit down with the organizer to discuss best practices when throwing events of this kind, and to see how we or any other agencies could be of assistance.”
The event's founder hopes to sit down with park officials to find a solution.