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8.II.O

New York City (NYC)
German-American Steuben Day Parade

 
 
Steuben Day Parade
Photo Credit: Time Out NY
 
     
 
Update:
The 2014 Parade will be held on Saturday, September 20th.
Click here for more details.

 
     
 

The German-American Steuben Parade is an annual event held in NYC on the 3rd Saturday of September. The parade route is along Fifth Avenue from 64th to 86th Street. The event was founded in the 1950s by German clubs in Queens and has grown into the biggest celebration of German heritage and culture in the world. The parade pays tribute to the contributions of German immigrants in the development of the United States of America. Colorful costumes, floats, music and dance are all part of the occasion. The parade finishes at Central Park with a big party featuring traditional German brand beers and plenty of German food for tasting.

The official symbol of the Steuben Parade is the Cornflower – in German Kornblume. It is distributed every year as part of the Parade fundraiser. The Cornflower also graces parade souvenirs from t-shirts to beer glasses and pins. The national flags of both Germany and the United States were presented at the first parade in 1957 by their respective presidents: Dwight D. Eisenhower of the United States and Theodor Heuss of the Federal Republic of Germany. More recently, flags are carried by the Honor Guard.

The Steuben Parade brings together the entire German-American community. Participants include members of various social and cultural clubs, sports clubs, religious groups and masons. The parade is always led by one or more Grand Marshals. Each year, the parade committee chooses the person to honor. Candidates have to fulfill one of two criteria: either they have to be an American citizen of German heritage who made an impact on society through work in politics, culture, diplomacy, sports, business or other field; or they have to be a German citizen with a strong history of working towards German-American friendship. Several of the more famous Grand Marshals of past parades include Dr. Henry Kissinger, George M. Steinbrenner, Donald Trump and many others.

The parade is named after General Baron Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, a Prussian officer under Frederick the Great, who came to the U.S. in 1777 to assist the newly formed Continental Army in the American Revolutionary War. He trained General Washington’s troops and helped lead them to victory. After the war, von Steuben retired to New York where he lived till his death in 1794.

 
     
 
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Source:
GermanParadeNYC.org

 
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