Pillow Fight in Washington Square Park Benefits Underprivileged Youth

By Sarah Jackson on April 12, 2018

Hundreds of people took to Washington Square Park on Saturday for a fight — a pillow fight, that is.

The annual pillow fight, hosted by Mattress Firm, took place on none other than International Pillow Fight Day.

A child smiles, swinging a pillow as he runs through the crowd.

Dennis Williams, a district manager for Mattress Firm, said the pillow fight was more than just a fun way to pass the day: It was also a way to give back. The bed retailer partnered with Dare2B, a local nonprofit that assists homeless children in the city, to ensure that pillows that were still in good condition after the feathery fight went to a good cause.

“They’re having tons of fun, we’re collecting donations for foster kids for the usage of our pillows, and then all the pillows that we have left over, Dare2B is actually going to give those out to folks in the city that are less fortunate,” Williams said. “So everything here is being reused, recycled, and repurposed to make a better life for someone else.”

A man and child react to being hit with one another’s pillows.

In addition, the proceeds from pillows purchased at the Mattress Firm store in NoHo went to Mattress Firm Foster Kids, which is part of Ticket to Dream, a foundation that raises money and supplies for foster children.

“It’s been a really great event, and really we’ve had people buying pillows from us out of our stores around the corner literally all day for this event,” Williams added.

During the pillow fight, adults and children alike joined in the fun, and a flurry of feathers soon covered the concrete.

“It’s a good way to blow off some steam and interact with people you don’t usually interact with,” participant Sahil Ali said.

Traves Gurley poses for a picture at the pillow fight in Washington Square Park on April 7.

Manhattan resident Traves Gurley, who wore Socker Boppers on his fists and a purple shirt saying “LIFE,” did not have a pillow — but he did have a playful message for those in attendance.

“Life is cruel, life is unpredictable, but it can also be fun, just like a pillow fight,” he said.

Hi there! My name is Sarah, and I'm majoring in Journalism and English at NYU. In my spare time, I like to play the violin, explore the city, and discover more indie rock bands.

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