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Mayor de Blasio Announces 'Hometown Heroes' Ticker Tape Parade to Thank Essential Workers and Celebrate New York City's Return

June 14, 2021

NEW YORK––Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced ‘Hometown Heroes,’ a ticker tape parade celebrating the Summer of New York City and thanking the essential workers who uplifted New Yorkers through the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The parade, which will take place at 11:00 A.M. on July 7, 2021, will begin by Manhattan’s Battery Park, travel along the Canyon of Heroes, and end with a ceremony in City Hall Park.

“We can never thank our essential workers enough for all they’ve done for this city. But we can celebrate their heroism in our streets – and put on a safe, dynamic, unforgettable parade to show our appreciation,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Thanks to these essential workers, we’ve fought back COVID-19 and we’re on our way to building a recovery for all of us. I can’t wait to march alongside them.”

“Over the course of 125 years, New Yorkers of all stripes have honored our hometown sports teams, world leaders, military veterans and astronauts, and to celebrate achievements in athletics, exploration, aviation and science. On behalf of all City agencies, it is our distinct honor to celebrate those New Yorkers who guided us through the darkest days of the pandemic,” said Dan Gross, Executive Director of Citywide Events.

“These individuals held our city together during one of its darkest hours and worked tirelessly to help New Yorkers through the COVID-19 pandemic. We cannot thank them enough for their sacrifice, but that's not going to stop us from trying,” said Melissa A. Browne, Executive Director of The Mayor’s Office of Special Projects and Community Events. “The ceremony will honor and celebrate the sacrifice and resilience of our frontline heroes.”

 “New York City’s road to recovery was built by the essential workers whose perseverance and courage carried our city during the toughest days of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Daniele Baierlein and JL Paniagua Valle Co-Executive Directors of the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. “We look forward to cheering and applauding these hometown heroes as they take their rightful march along the Canyon of Heroes.”

The parade will feature a variety of different floats, each of which representing a group of essential workers who served this city heroically throughout the pandemic. Represented groups will include:

  • Advocacy organizations
  • City workers
  • Educators
  • Emergency food providers
  • Faith leaders
  • First responders
  • Healthcare workers
  • Hospitality and buildings workers
  • Retail and bodega workers
  • Social service and settlement house workers
  • Transportation workers
  • Utilities workers

"During one of the city's darkest moments, our essential workers sacrificed their own health and time with family to serve all New Yorkers. Now that our city has reopened, it’s fitting to honor these heroes with a New York-style celebration. Our city is on the path to recovery because of their work and it’s time to clap for them in-person as they march the Canyon of Heroes," said Speaker Corey Johnson.

“New York’s essential workers more than deserve to be honored with a ticker tape parade down the Canyon of Heroes,” said US Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, “I look forward to celebrating and thanking the incredible New Yorkers who kept this city going throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

“The COVID-19 pandemic had an unprecedented generational impact on all New Yorkers and New York City and it is an understatement to say that that our hometown heroes rose to the challenge, sacrificing all that they had to keep us safe,” said US Representative Adriano Espaillat. “Without their heroism, countless more lives would have been lost during this public health emergency had it not been for sustained commitment of our hometown essential workers in all sectors of our daily lives upended by the COVID-19 pandemic. New York City will forever be indebted to our hometown heroes. I’m proud to join Mayor de Blasio and leaders to recognize all of our essential workers who have put their lives ahead of their own for the sake of all New Yorkers. To everyone who came together in our times of crisis and need: Thank you and we are forever indebted to you.”

“Words cannot begin to express the endless gratitude, admiration and love Queens has for our essential workers — many of whom call our borough home — who kept us afloat in the darkest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, when Queens was the epicenter of the epicenter of the world's worst public health crisis in a century,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Jr. “To the doctors, nurses and first responders who put their own lives on the line to save complete strangers, the grocery store and food service workers who kept our families fed, the city employees who clocked in every day to keep Queens moving and all our guardians; you deserve a celebration befitting the remarkable heroism you've all shown. On July 7 and every day, we stand with you and pledge to honor all you've done for us.”

"Our essential workers were the lifeblood of the borough during the pandemic and we will always be in their debt for their selflessness during the many challenges presented by COVID-19. This parade is a fitting tribute to the people who put on their respective uniforms each day and did their part to save lives and keep our essential services running," said Staten Island Borough President James Oddo.

"I hope that many eyes have been opened to the value of these jobs that were deemed "essential" during quarantine," said Council Member Margaret Chin. "Historically, so many of these workers are underpaid because their work is unfairly mischaracterized as unskilled labor. The New Yorkers who delivered your groceries, cooked your takeout food, or drove you to your appointments deserve to be recognized not just for their contribution to our city's economy, but because we rely on them to keep our city running. These New Yorkers risked exposure to a deadly virus during a global pandemic while so many others had the privilege of staying at home. As the city reopens we must continue to respect and advocate for these workers, and it is our honor to march alongside them."

“New York City owes a debt of gratitude to our essential workers that we can never truly repay. The essential workers who fed us, cared for our neighbors, and kept our City running are indeed heroes,” said State Senator Brad Hoylman. “I’m glad Mayor de Blasio is planning a Hometown Heroes Ticker Tape Parade this July and I can’t wait to celebrate these vital New Yorkers as they march down the Canyon of Heroes, cementing their place in our City’s rich history.”

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