New York City (NYC)
Photo Credit: PJ Smith/Wall Street Journal
The 2016 Parade will be held on Sunday, September 18th.
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The African-American Day Parade is held in late September in Harlem. It was founded in the spring of 1968, and Harlem
was chosen as the venue due to its large representation of African-American people. Established as an independent organization,
the parade does not accept contributions and is based on volunteerism. Its route spans across 111th Street and Adam Clayton
Powell Boulevard, proceeding to 142nd Street and then turning right to Fifth Avenue.
The first Parade was marched in September 1969, and its Grand Marshall was Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr.
The African-American Parade is a huge multi-colored event with everything in it: richly adorned floats, incredible
costumes, dazzling dancers and variety of music from soca to reggae, ragga and soul.
The purpose of the parade is to provide an opportunity for African-American people to join together on a special day to
celebrate their history and achievements. The Parade provides place for organizations, dignitaries, celebrities, community
leaders and bands. It is recognized as a national parade with representatives and organizations from 12 states. In 2009, the
parade had a record attendance of nearly 1 million viewers.
Some of the famous Grand Marshalls of the past Parades include: Denzel Washington, Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr., Mayor David Dinkins, and Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm. Musical celebrities also regularly participate in the parade.