Philippine Independence Day Parade

Philippine Independence Day Parade
The Philippine Independence Day Parade in New York City is the biggest Philippine Independence Day Parade outside the Philippines. It is held annually on the first Sunday of June, alongside an all-day cultural festival and street fair.

The history of the Philippine Independence Day Parade in NYC dates back to 1972, when Filipino American organizations led by the Philippine Communities Executive Council (PCEC) first came together to plan a Philippine Independence Day celebration in New York City that would commemorate the 1898 Philippine Declaration of Independence from Spain and showcase the historical and cultural heritage of the Philippines and its people. The inaugural parade featured participants from New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, representing various civic, social, educational, and fraternal groups. The procession consisted of several drum and bugle corps and a dozen floats.

In 1986, the Philippine Consulate in New York started to actively participate in the preparation for the parade. Three years later, the consulate formed a committee to take charge of the event, and the 1989 parade turned out a huge success. This made the Filipino community of New York City realize that the Independence Day Parade had become a point of unity, cooperation, and empowerment among Filipinos living in New York City. Thus, the idea of creating an organization that would promote Filipino cultural heritage through the annual Independence Day Parade was born.

However, it took some time to bring this idea to fruition. The Philippine Independence Day Council Inc. (PIDCI) was officially established in October 2001 and incorporated as a not-for-profit organization in February 2002. The main objectives of PIDCI are to promote Filipino cultural heritage through the Independence Day Parade and other events, reinforce mutual cooperation among various Filipino American organizations, and protect the interests of rights of Filipino Americans.

The NYC Philippine Independence Day Parade is held on the first Sunday of June, about a week before the actual Philippine Independence Day. Preceded by a flag raising ceremony and Independence Mass, it marches along Madison Avenue in Manhattan, starting at Madison Avenue and 38th Street and ending at 27th Street. The festive procession usually consists of more than 100 contingents of marchers, bands, floats, open convertibles, and invited celebrities and special guests.

The Philippine Independence Day Parade, followed by a street fair and cultural festival, is an impressive showcase of Philippine culture, heritage, and talent. The event features local performers and artists alongside international celebrity guests, all dressed in vibrant traditional costumes. Every year, the Philippine Day parade is attended by more than 100,000 visitors, predominantly Filipinos and Filipino-Americans, from the New York tri-state area and Pennsylvania, neighboring states, California, and even Canada.

The Philippine Independence Day Parade went on a short hiatus during the COVID-19 pandemic, but returned in 2022.

Philippine Independence Day Parade

Photo: taboyc




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