Tag Archives: Hispanic Day Parade

Hispanics Beaming With Cultural Display on 5th Ave.

11 Oct
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Viva La Hispanidad

     The largest display of Hispanic culture in the US occurred this past Sunday on 5th Ave. with over 18 Spanish-speaking nations united to represent their particular customs through costume and dance in the 53rd annual Hispanic Day Parade. October is known as Hispanic Heritage month and this was one huge celebration of all the contributions made to help build this country. NYC is the largest Hispanic city in the country and the parade helps remind revelers of traditional customs from their motherland.  Light rain early on did not stop the hundreds of thousands of revelers from lining up the parade route from 44th to 72nd Sts. The weather cleared up some and the fun started when the mounted police signaled the start of the parade. This years honorary lead group was ARCIA Drum and Bugle Corp. representing Panama. They got things warmed up for a spectacular day of cultural display and unity among nations. After parade VIPs and dignitaries made their way up to the reviewing stand on 64th St., a group of young dancers dressed in traditional Spaniard flamenco attire showed off some of their moves. A surprise display was a mural from Spanish artist Leyton with his homage to Pablo Picasso. The parade always starts off with Spain as the lead group since they were one of the first Europeans to cross the Atlantic to the New World.  Casa Galicia represented Spain with their traditional bagpipe marching band.

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Homage to Picasso

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El Salvador Bringing It

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Panamanian Polleras

 

     The sequence of the parade always goes in alphabetical order even though the Bolivians always have more groups than anyone else and scatter them throughout the parade. Argentina displayed a float with a pair of tango dancers and a classy singer pumping out national tunes with heartfelt tones. Bolivians have some of the most diverse of any groups. They have Tinkus with a very energetic dance and colorful costumes and Morenales which have a slower paced dance and the favorite Caporales paying homage to San Simon. Chileans came up the parade route with their Huasos (cowboys) and lovely partners performing a Cueca dance, the National dance of Chile. Then the party really got started when the Colombians made their way up the parade route. Last years Appreciation Award winner returned in full force with the Carnavalers From Baranquilla. They were one of the most energetic groups and proud to show off their magnificent costumes. Soon after them was the traditional Colombian Cumbia dance group. A bit more toned down but still fun to watch. Costa Rica showed off their beauty queen while the Dominican Republic sent their mischievous diablos to crack their whips.

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Spaniards Taking the Lead

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Dominican Diablos Getting Fired Up

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Bolivian Angels Flying Up the Parade Route

 

      Ecuador had traditional dancers showing their moves. A show-stealer was definitely the El Salvador Torito Pinto Marching Band down from Boston. Their marching band was a diverse instrumental band with a large brass band section that tore it up. Guatemala sent a nice band from Trenton, NJ. Honduras had a nice float with traditional dancers. Mexico had a good diverse group with Indians and a nice group performing the Danze de los Tecuanes (dance of the Jaguar). Nicaragua displayed an original artwork of unifying flags from Hispanic nations. Panama always brings a large a proud display of culture. They are very proud of their bugle and drum bands as well as their traditional polleras. It truly was an amazing sight. Paraguay sent their cowboys and cowgirls. They always send a group of ladies performing the folkloric Danza de las Botellas (The Bottle Dance). Peru had a nice group of traditional dancers. Puerto Rico had a group of salsa dancers but more importantly had a large banner of where to donate to help recover from one the most disastrous hurricanes to claim the island. Have no doubt, Puerto Rico will rise even stronger than before. Uruguay had a float with traditional Candombe band but its really better to watch them march and dance instead of riding on a float. Wrapping things up was Venezuela with a nice float and fun dancers.

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Jaguar Scaring the Crowd

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Panamanian Float

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Paraguay Bottle Dancers

 

     This was one of the better parades of the year. It showed the diversity and strength of the Hispanic culture. People from all parts of the world come in to march and watch a grand extravaganza that made anyone watching captivated by its glory and passion.

 

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Que Alegria..What Happiness

Rain Doesn’t Damper Spirits at the Hispanic Day Parade

10 Oct
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Military Veterans proudly display Latino Flags

A morning of showers kept many revelers home and had the marchers on edge about marching in wet raw weather but after a minor delay, the 52nd annual Hispanic Day parade got started up the parade route on 5th Ave. from 45th to 65th Sts. Normally this parade draws over a million revelers with marchers coming from many parts of the US and Latin American countries. This is a display of culture and contribution of Latinos from over 19 countries have made to this great nation. Macys and the Daily News award the group with best representation with an prize for their costumes and performance. Although the crowds were not as large as in previous years, the marchers were having a fun time dancing their native and traditional dances. As usual the lead country is Spain as she is considered to be the Mother country of Latinos after the colonial conquest all throughout the Western hemisphere. There was an equal amount of representation of native Indians and of the African influence in Hispanic culture. Typically, this parade starts of alphabetically with Argentina and Bolivia kicking things off.

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Parade Beauty Queens

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Carnaval Costumer from Barranquilla Colombia

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Panamanian Dancers

Although there was no tango dancing this year, the Argentinians did display their gaucho costumes while the Bolivians did have some high energy dancing with the Indian influenced tinkus getting things started. A group of cowboys from Chile showed of their costumes and dance moves.   The Colombians showed off their native dances mostly cumbia.  There was a Carnaval group from Colombia dressed up in comical costumes that ended up winning the big award for the event. Costa Rica and Dominican Republic had some traditional representations. Ecuador had some nice costumes and beauty queens. Two marching bands were in from El Salvador that were pretty good. One was a sharply dressed group called Banda El Carbonero from NY and the other was a group up from Maryland that also displayed a group of military veterans.  Honduras had some colorful costumes and sent a soccer hero. Mexico usually some traditional dancers and the chinelos group but the rain kept them away this year. Nicaragua had some cute costumes as well but had seen better in years before.

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Banda El Carbanero Having Fun

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Uruguayan Candombe Drummers

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Bolivian Tinkus in Full Force

Every year, the group from Panama sends many bands from their native land. It must be a great treat for many of the band members visiting for the first time. The first group was from the Soyuz School. They were very good. The next one was even better from the Banda Cristiana de Panama…Loved their outfits. There was a group from Paraguay showing off their traditional dances. Usually the dancers balance 3 bottles on their head but the wind gusts limited the bottle count to only one this year. There were a few Peruvian dancing groups but the best one had to be the traditional dancers. Uruaguay always sends their condombe conga drummers with their sexy dancers. Venezuela has been getting better in sending more groups and floats to represent their culture. Closing out the parade was more bands from Panama including the Colegio Felix Oliveras Contreras soon followed by the Banda San Miguel Arcangel with traditional dancers. Saving the best for last was the Banda Internacional Apacolipsis with their devilish red costumes..they were scorching hot. Even though the weather was not great for a  parade day, the spirits were flying high and Latinos from every nation would be very proud.

Latin Unity Abound on 5th Ave. at the Hispanic Day Parade

15 Oct
Flags of Nations Displayed

Flags of Nations Displayed

For the last 51 years, the day before Columbus Day is celebrated by millions of fans coming out to the parade route on 5th Ave. to celebrate Hispanic culture in dance and music and costume. As the end of Hispanic Heritage Month comes closer, the parade showcases all the different cultures and their similarities. From the gauchos of Argentina and Chile to the diablos of Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico to the hot dancers from Colombia and Panama…all came to show their talents and national pride. All Latinos speak Spanish but like here in the States there are accents and dialects of the same language. Kicking off the parade were junior cadets holding flags of all the Hispanic nations. The first of 18 nations represented in the parade was the group from Spain, as that’s who financed Columbus’ voyage to the Western hemisphere.  A group of lady flamenco dancers displayed their slow sensual moves to the cheering crowd. They were soon followed by the winner of this years Miss Universe pageant, Miss Colombia Paulina Vega and the 1st prize winner of the folkloric dance competition from Peru, Fuerza Peruana.  They were just warming things up for what would be a display of celebration and unity among Latinos.

Miss Universe Paulina Vega

Miss Universe Paulina Vega

Flamenco Dancers From Spain

Flamenco Dancers From Spain

Bolivian Dancer in Training

Bolivian Dancer in Training

The flow of the parade goes alphabetically with Argentina and their gauchos and tango dancers leading things off. Then one of the largest and most colorful groups from Bolivia showed the diversity of their culture with the San Simon Caporales dancing their energetic dance. The Indian Tinkus and the Morenales also made their way up the parade route on 5th Ave from 44th to 68th Sts. Colombia got into the mix with their colorful costumes and even had some impressive youthful dancers show off their moves. Costa Rica had some really tall stilt walkers and Cuba had a Celia Cruz wannabe. Azucar. The diablos from the Dominican Republic cracked their whips and got the crowd worked up. Ecuador had a decent representation with some good folkloric dancers having fun. El Salvador had an impressive marching band. Guatemala has always been the most environmentally conscience of the nations. Honduras got into the mix with a lively float. Mexico had a nice variety of dancers with traditional costumes but the crowd favorite has always been the super hyper chinelos in their amazing costumes. Nicaragua had a larger group than last year but still could use a boost.

Bolivian Pasion

Bolivian Pasion

Dominican Diablos

Dominican Diablos

Panamanian Queen

Panamanian Queen

Last years winner of the coveted Hispanic Culture Award presented by Macy’s for the group that best represents Latin culture and pride was Panama and they surely went all out to retain their crown. They had some of the most impressive floats and marching bands from both Panama and Brooklyn. Probably the highlight of that group were the High School marching band from San Vicente de Paul. and Manual Maria Tejada Roca MB. They were amazing and could give any US HS marching band a run for the money. Peru brought their better dancers to show off some moves. Puerto Rico sent a Marc Anthony wannabe. They definitely need to step up their game especially since their are so many Puerto Ricans living in the city. Hello. Paraguay got into the mix with their balancing bottles act. Closing out the parade were the scantily clad ladies from Uruguay with their drummers keeping the pace moving. Venezuela had a better group than last year and were more environmentally friendly. Each year the parade gets better and close to a million people came out to support the Hispanic culture and contribution to this great city.

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So long my Queen. See you next year.

So long my Queen. See you next year.

A Spanish Explosion of Color and Dance Rock 5th Ave.

16 Oct

Let's Dance Spanish Style

Let’s Dance Spanish Style


The celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month culminated with the 50th annual Hispanic Day Parade lined up on 5th Ave. from 38th to 78th Sts. This year’s version displayed a wide variety of colorful costumes and enthusiastic dancing from all the different Hispanic countries in Central and South America and the Caribbean islands under Spanish influence from colonial times. As always the first group to march was from Spain wit their fancy flamenco dancers and State Police representatives. A parade staple from Casa Galicia played the bagpipes to get the crowd warmed up for what would be a spectacular day of Hispanic culture. The parade usually goes in alphabetical order with Argentina leading the way but I guess the groups from Paraguay had to leave early and jumped the line as they were the first ones to march after the Spain contingency. They were abit on the unusual side with lovely ladies balancing glass bottles on their head.
Beauty Queen

Beauty Queen

Bolivian Caporales

Bolivian Caporales

Chilean Couple

Chilean Couple


Argentina added to their usual tango dancers float with more traditional dancing. Bolivia has one of the largest groups in the parade as they have such a variety of dancers to display. First are the tinkus, then the morenales and then the high energy caporales from Virginia with their shiny cowboy costumes and bells on their boots. Speaking of cowboys…the Chileans dressed up their young children in cowboy costumes while the girls wore traditional costumes. Another large group were the Colombians with their colorful costumes and cumbia dancers. One group had an usual costume as though they were clowns from the netherworld. Costa Rica was known for their majestic Arabian horses doing their signature gallop as though they were dancing to the music. The Caribbean representatives danced their way up in Cuba and the Dominican Republic soon followed by the large group from Ecuador. El Salvador had one of the better bands based out of Washington DC to appear up the parade route. A large float with costumed characters came from the Guatemalan group. One float of note and appeared for the first time was that of the Hispanic Muslim women.
Dominican diablos

Dominican diablos

Ecuadorian Beauty

Ecuadorian Beauty

Mexican chinelos

Mexican chinelos


Halfway through the parade, Honduras marched up with a band from Las Vegas soon to be followed by the large group from Mexico including traditional Mexican dancers, a marching band from Puebla, Mexico and the energetic chinelos dancers. More Central Americans appeared with a small group from Nicaragua followed by another large group from Panama with their beloved marching bands from Panama City. Rounding out the parade were the groups from Peru with their traditional dancers and the rhythmic and scantily clad dancers from Uruguay. Oh and I can’t forget the Venezuelans. They had a small group to represent. Anyone that stayed for the 4 hour parade was certainly treated to the many aspects of Hispanic culture. One of the best parts was when the flag of the Latin American nations was displayed. United by a common language, Hispanics showed that there is strength in diversity.
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All the Americas!!!

All the Americas!!!

Hispanics Heat Up 5th Ave. with Some Hot Dancing

15 Oct
Parade of Flags

Parade of Flags

Every second Sunday in October, 5th Ave. turns into a colorful show of traditional costume and dance as Hispanics proudly display one or more parts of their culture. Some things you may not even see in their country but you will see it in NYC. That’s what makes parades in NYC better than any parades in any other city in the world. No where else will you see over 18 countries send representatives to march and show off the best of their culture. This one of my favorite parades to cover because of all the different customs and costumes. Although the same language is spoken in all these countries, the customs and traditions have their own identity. Much like your great grandmother had children and each took off to blaze their own trail, the parade started off with mother Spain and their display of flamenco dancers and the bagpipe band of Casa Galicia. They really got the crowd worked up for what was sure to be a fitting end to Hispanic Heritage Month. The 47th version of the Hispanic Day Parade included a competition among the participants for the coveted Cultural Appreciation Award.

Flamenco Dancers from Spain

Flamenco Dancers from Spain

 

Casa Galicia

Casa Galicia

 

Argentinian Dancers

Argentinian Dancers

As in previous parades, the groups appear in alphabetical order with Argentina kicking it off with some gauchos dancing and an incredible pair of tango dancers steaming things up on 5th Ave.  The heat just kept on building when the dancers from Bolivia marched up with their colorful costumes. Bolivians have always had a large group as they have three main dances, the morenadas, the caporales, and the tinkus. The Chileans made their way up the parade route in cowboy costumes. Another larger group were the Colombians with their brilliant costumes and fast paced dancing that really got the crowd dancing salsa and cumbia with them. A van with a huge rack of speakers blasted some hot merengue so some Dominican diablos can dance and work the crowd.  A float with some Ecuadorians kicked up the heat a notch with some sizzling boosters followed by some traditional dancing. A fired up marching band from El Salvador worked the crowd with their drumbeat.  Last years award winner from Guatemala arrived with marchers dressed in official military attire.  The Honduran group had a lively presentation with dancers and a marching band that could rival any band from NYC.

Bolivian dancers

Bolivian dancers

 

Dominican beauty

Dominican beauty

 

Ecuadorians working the crowd

Ecuadorians working the crowd

Keeping the torrid pace of dancing were the Mexican chinelos hopping up and down in their typical high energy style. This year’s award winner, Panama, had a large group arrive with the ladies in decorative polleras, strong marching bands from Panama and some spicy dancing. They deserved the prize. Paraguay arrived with the ladies balancing bottles on their heads. Another large group were from Peru with both traditional costume and dance. Towards the end of that section were a group of sizzling dancers that really worked it. Closing out the parade was the drum group from Uruguay with their hot and sexy dancers that got the crowd all worked up and wanting more.  But all good things must come to an end and this year’s Hispanic Day Parade was filled with lots of color and pride for all of NYC to see and be a part of.

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God Bless the Americas

God Bless the Americas

Hispanics Unite for One Great Parade

16 Oct

It’s not too often that about 19 different countries are represented for one day in  a display of culture and tradition. New York City is one of the few cities that can pull it off in grand style. The warm mid October day brought out nearly one million people to 5th Ave. to see the 49th annual Hispanic Day Parade.  Flags of all Latin American countries were displayed on the parade route from 44th St. to 68th  St. and spectators cheered on as their country of origin marched by or danced in most cases. As a show of unity, the Mother Cabrini marching band carried all the flags of Latin America to kick off the parade. The Honorable Mayor Bloomberg marched to show his support for all the immigrants that now call New York their home. Kicking off the first of many groups were the Spaniards and their flamenco dancers and bagpipe marchers. It’s really a treat to see them every year. As by design in alphabetical order, the first on Latin countries was Argentina showing off their old style cars and singers. The tango dancers must have caught a break this year. Then the fun really started when the first of many Bolivian dancers made their way up the parade route. The San Simon Caporales got the crowd excited with their energetic dance moves and great costumes. Chilean dancers showed off their style of dancing with guacho outfits for the men and evening gowns for the ladies. It was almost a waltz like dance with waving handkerchiefs. Very classy. However, the elegant dancing quickly changed when the Colombians made their way up 5th Ave. Their loud costumes and loud music let everyone know the party starts here and the crowd just loved it.

Toning things down temporarily were the Costa Ricans and Cubans with their display of fine horses and beauty queens. Then the Dominican diablos cracked their whips to pick up the pace again. One of the more energetic dance groups came from Ecuador. They really worked up a sweat. One of the better bands came from the group representing El Salvador but they just warmed things up this years winner of the best representation of culture, the group from Guatemala. Their marching band was on point with soilders doing a unique march. A float with musicians playing the vibes masterfully was a nice touch. Their display of traditional dress and costume gave a unique addition to their presentation.   Conga players were jamming when the Hondurans came up singing and dancing to native songs. The energy level kept going on high when the Mexican Chilenos showed up and danced their tails off. The serious baseline could only mean one thing, the Panamanians were next. They love their bands and had some the best bands and baton twirlers I have seen at any parades this year. They were a joy to watch. Paraguay had an unusual display of balance as several dancers had a few glass bottles resting on their heads. Leading the way with some really good dance moves was the group from Peru showing off several different styles of dance. A definite crowd pleaser was the group from Uruguay with their conga drum band and dancing ladies. Rounding out the great display Hispanic culture and tradition came the small group from Venezuela.

By far the largest representation came from the Bolivians. They were so large many of their marchers had to be placed in between other countries marchers and towards the end of the parade. There was no doubt each of the countries representatives made their people proud and surely reminded them of the beauty of their native land. Hispanics are very diversified yet united by one common language. Their place in this city and this country is slowly but surely rising to prominence. Mark your calendar for next year’s 50th anniversary parade celebration. It’s sure to be one of the best the city offers.

LATINOS UNIDOS PARA PAZ Y PROSPERIDAD.

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