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Filipinos Dazzle on Madison Ave. for the Independence Day Parade

4 Jun

 

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   The second leg of the dual parade day was for one of the more colorful parades so far this year. Billed as the largest celebration outside of the Philippines, the Filipino Independence Day parade got under way on Madison Ave. near 38th St. and made its way down to 25th St. where a large stage was set up for an after parade festival. On  June 12th, 1898, Filipinos proclaimed their independence from Spain and has been a key ally of the US ever since. In this version, there were groups both honoring and decrying the current Filipino President Duterte. Beauty queens were abound with elegant gentlemen dressed in the Spanish style guayaberas.

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     One of the best parts of the parade are the native tribal costumes and dance. There is a huge group dance competition each January in the Philippines and the winner is invited to this parade to display the much revered Nino Santo – the Holy child. One group that really stood out was the colorful group from Cebu. Their costumes were amazing.  All the marchers stopped by the reviewing stand on 28th St. where parade VIPs approved of the dance or display.  Another group from Talisay also had colorful costumes and nice dances. This is one of the most colorful and friendliest parades of the city. If you have the chance, it’s well worth the effort to see it.

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Only In Israel Theme Abundant on Celebrate Israel Day

4 Jun

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     The first of the dual parade Sunday started out with a sea of white and blue Israeli flags being waved by the thousands of revelers on the parade route on 5th Ave from 55th to 74th Sts. All the members of temples and yeshivas in the tri state area come out to celebrate Israel and the Jewish people of New York City.  This year the parade celebrates its 55th year and the celebration was loud and proud.  As usual, the mounted police signaled the start of the parade and was soon followed by the blowing of the shofar – a large horn blown to signal the people to come together for a special occasion.

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     One of the nicest things about the parade is the large homemade banners displayed by the many groups depicting the theme of the parade. This year’s theme was Only in Israel. Banners depicted the Israeli entry in to space with a spacecraft getting close to the moon and innovations in agriculture that will help feed millions more across the planet.  Of course a parade isn’t a parade without marching bands and they did not disappoint at all. Fusion Core kicked things off with a nice drumline. They were soon followed by the impressive Connecticut Hurricanes Drum and Bugle Band.  A really nice surprise was the Quaker City String Band from Philadelphia that really got the crowd worked up. I wished I could have stayed for the entire event but the second leg of the dual parade day got started on Madison Ave.  Gotta go. Oy Vey!!!

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Celebrate Israel

 

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