Many of the parades along lower Madison Ave. lead to a festival, with food and drink, alongside Madison Square Park. The annual celebration of Pakistan's independence is an entertaining example. Several years ago I had similar hopes for the Persian Day event, but except for commercially packaged snacks I saw little in the way of refreshments. My sole surviving photo is of the annotated coffee cart shown here.
This year the snacks were more intriguing, and the skewered meats, abundant; I caught a glimpse of the thick noodle soup called ash reshteh, too. Because I was headed to a brunch engagement nearby, however, I limited myself to a Persian ice cream sandwich, flavored with saffron, rose water, and pistachio. For a few photos of the day's food and drink and many of the colorful parade participants, see the Eating In Translation page on Facebook.
Persian Day Parade and Festival
The parade proceeds from 38th St. south on Madison Ave. to the festival site, in the vicinity of Madison Square Park, Manhattan
(The 2015 parade and festival was held on April 19)