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Diner en Blanc: New York leads world’s biggest popup picnic

NEW YORK (AP) — Five thousand people dressed in white got together for the world’s largest popup picnic at a location revealed only at the last moment.

Guests for Tuesday’s Diner en Blanc, French for Dinner in White, showed up at one of 24 designated spots where the secret venue was disclosed.

Then came the spectacle: dining and dancing under the open sky at Pier 26 on the Hudson River in Manhattan’s tony Tribeca neighborhood. Participants brought what they wanted for a chic BYO, including food, tables, chairs and even silverware and candles. They also had to clean up after themselves.

Wendy Chang, a Hawaii native who works for an architectural firm that helped build One World Trade Center, bought the white chairs she shared with friends at IKEA. While there, she also spotted the headdress she wore Tuesday night: a white lampshade.

“This is great for people watching,” she said. “I love it.”

Cindy Joseph, a Brooklyn insurance analyst, called the evening “amazing.”

“You meet great new people under the stars,” she said.

Joseph said she and a friend brought their supplies on the subway.

Each participant pre-registered for the event, paying $30. Food and drinks also were available at cost.

The phenomenon started in Paris in 1988 and has expanded to 60 cities on five continents, but organizers say the one in New York is the biggest. More than 125,000 people signed up this year.

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