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PR- 265-09
June 11, 2009


Special Guests include Parade Honorary Godfather and Legendary Singer Jose Feliciano, Parade Grand Marshal Dr. David Bernier and Parade Chairperson Madelyn Lugo

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today hosted a reception in celebration of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade at Gracie Mansion.  The Mayor will march in this year's parade set to take place on Sunday, June 14 up Fifth Avenue from 44th Street to 86th Street.  New York City began its tradition of honoring the culture and contributions of the people of Puerto Rico with a parade 52 years ago, and it became a nationwide celebration in 1995, attracting millions of spectators to the parade route.  Joining Mayor Bloomberg at Gracie Mansion were Deputy Mayor for Legal Affairs Carol Robles-Román; National Puerto Rican Day Parade Committee Chairperson Madelyn Lugo; National Puerto Rican Day Parade Grand Marshal Dr. David Bernier; National Puerto Rican Day Parade Honorary Godfather José Feliciano; Anheuser-Busch, Inc. Geographic Marketing Manager Zulema T. Wiscovitch; Galos Corporation President Carlos Velasquez, recording artist Willie Colón; and other City officials.

"The National Puerto Rican Day Parade has quickly become one of New York City's most exciting traditions," said Mayor Bloomberg. "I congratulate the parade's organizers for promoting la cultura de la Isla del Encanto . With so many Puerto Rican New Yorkers making their mark in our City and our country, we can see the longstanding contributions of Puerto Ricans to our City's economic and cultural life across all five boroughs."

This year's Grand Marshal of the parade is Dr. David Bernier Rivera, president of the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee, the highest organization of international sports in Puerto Rico.  The Parade is dedicated to the city of Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. Mayor Bloomberg presented Madelyn Lugo, chairperson of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, with a Proclamation in honor of the parade's many contributions to our City. 

Also attending this year's reception were a number of  Mayors from Puerto Rican cities including Mayor Alfredo Alejandro of Juncos, Mayor Luis Arroyo of Augas Buenas, Mayor Jorge Gonzalez of Jayuya, Mayor Carlos Lopez of Rincon, Mayor Jorge Marquez of Manuabo, Mayor Roberto Pagan Centeno of Lares, Mayor Jose Parga Ojeda of Florida, Mayor Enrique Questell of Santa Isabel, Mayor Jose G. Rodriguez of Hatillo, Mayor Jose Rosario of Cataño, Mayor Anibal Vega Borges of Toa Baja, and Mayor Heriberto Velez of Quebradillas.

Anheuser Busch, GALOS Corporation and Goya Foods generously sponsored the reception.  Food and beverage donations were provided by Bacardi, Capri Bakery, Coca-Cola, Delicioso Coco Helado, Hunts Point Economic Development Corporation, La Fonda Boricua and Salsa Catering & Special Events.  Entertainment at tonight's reception provided by Yaguembe and Luz Celenia Tirado & the Troubador Children.


Stu Loeser / Evelyn Erskine   (212) 788-2958

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