English in NYC Series: Summer Parades

English in NYC Series: Summer Parades

New York City comes alive during the summer season with a variety of exciting events, and one of the most captivating experiences is attending a summer parade. These parades showcase the city’s diverse culture, vibrant traditions, and community spirit. In this guide we talk about some of NYC’s most famous summer parades. 

  1. Mermaid Parade:

The Coney Island Mermaid Parade is held every June, this magical parade brings together people dressed as mermaids, pirates, and other sea creatures. Thousands of people, both to watch and participate, come to Coney Island to see the extraordinary costumes, fun shows, and lively floats. The Mermaid Parade is a celebration of creativity and the joy of summer.

  1. Pride Parade:

The Pride Parade in New York City is a powerful demonstration of love, acceptance, and equality, celebrated in June during Pride Month. This parade attracts millions of participants and spectators from diverse backgrounds. Colorful floats, lively performances, and heartfelt messages create an electrifying atmosphere as the parade winds its way through Manhattan. The Pride Parade serves as a reminder of the progress made in LGBTQ+ rights and the ongoing fight for inclusivity.

  1. Puerto Rican Day Parade:

The Puerto Rican Day Parade, held in June along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, is a dazzling tribute to Puerto Rican culture and heritage. This grand procession features marching bands, traditional folkloric performances, and beautifully adorned floats. The parade showcases the pride of the Puerto Rican community, with vibrant music, colorful attire, and a celebration of unity.

  1. Dominican Day Parade:

The Dominican Day Parade, held in August along Sixth Avenue, is a lively celebration of Dominican culture and contributions. This vibrant parade showcases traditional music, dance, and dazzling costumes. The sounds of merengue and bachata fill the air, and the parade displays the vibrant Dominican flags and symbols. The Dominican Day Parade is a joyous celebration of the Dominican community’s rich heritage and achievements in New York City.

  1. West Indian American Day Carnival Parade:

In Brooklyn, on Labor Day, the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade arrives. 

At this parade New Yorkers celebrate the rich cultural heritage of Caribbean communities in New York City. Participants wear colorful costumes at Eastern Parkway. It’s a lively celebration of Caribbean traditions.

New York City’s summer parades offer a vibrant and culturally rich experience. Attending these parades allows New Yorkers to celebrate diverse traditions and celebrate the spirit of unity and community. From the Mermaid Parade to the vibrant West Indian American Day Carnival Parade, these parades give an opportunity to embrace cultural diversity and create lasting memories. So, join in the festivities, experience the energy, and celebrate summer in NYC’s spectacular parades!

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Biography Workshop

Our 3A, 3P, CCR-A, and CCR-P learned how to interview a partner and write a biography based on the the interview from Corinne who is our Advanced Creative Writing Class Teacher and the Associated Director of the Gallatin Writing Program of NYU.

  • Students are learning what biographies are and brainstorming their interview questions.
  • Students are interviewing their partner.
  • Students are writing a biography based on their interview.
  • Some students are reading their biography.
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English in NYC Series: Mr. Softee

Practicing your English in NYC Series:

Mr. Softee!

Have you seen this truck?

Among NYC’s many delights is Mr. Softee, an ice cream truck that is a huge part of summer joy and childhood memories- and what better way to use English than talking about ice cream! 

Ice Cream Vocabulary:

Before jumping into the world of Mr. Softee, let’s start by looking at some ice cream vocabulary.

Here are some words and phrases you might need when ordering from an ice cream truck:

Mr. Softee is not just an ice cream truck; it is a part of New York City. It has been in NYC for many years.

One of the most exciting things about Mr. Softee is the menu. Practice common phrases and expressions like “Can I have a scoop of chocolate ice cream, please?” or “I’d like a vanilla cone with sprinkles, please.” Mr. Softee in NYC offers more than just delicious ice cream, it can provide you with a chance to learn new vocabulary and practice your English language in a fun and easy way. So, next time you hear Mr. Softee’s song, grab a sweet treat and practice your English skills!

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Various Events

It was a full house last Tuesday during our Job & Resource Fair! Our participants had the chance to learn about job openings, training opportunities, and other resources available in the city. A very big thank you to our partners that participated in this fair!

Our E3 and E4 students also had a workshop about scams and identity theft with Chase Bank last Wednesday. We want to thank Chase for visiting us nine times to host a series of financial literacy workshops. It was very informative and useful!

Our W2 students had a virtual workshop with Tenement Museum on a theme titled Making a Living. Our students could learn about a part of immigration history and related it to their own immigrant life.

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Family and Financial Literacy Workshops

Last Wednesday, our 2A, 2P, 3A, and 3P students learned effective reading strategies to use at home with children from a children’s librarian from Seward Park Library. He introduced what services our students can use at the New York Public Library and taught how to read to children by demonstrating his way of reading. During the demonstration, our students were laughing and smiling as if they were children. I hope they learned it very well and can do the same with their own children at home.

The next day, our E3 and E4 students learned about how to make financial decisions that help maintain good credit with Chase Bank.

And, last Saturday, Chase Bank returned to teach our W2 and W3 students about how to identify and avoid financial scams. They not only learned about different types of scams but also shared their or their acquaintances’ experiences to prevent themselves from falling victim.

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Asian-American Pacific Islander month!

May is Asian-American Pacific Islander month, and Bryant Park is celebrating all month long!

On May 12, there are many events in which to participate!

May 12, 2023, 3:00pm–7:00pm

Join us on Friday, May 12 in the afternoon to celebrate the AAPI instructors, educators, and cultural partners that collaborate with Bryant Park throughout the year. Circle though the park and try your hand at different workshops and classes all afternoon and be sure to stick around for the evening showcase. All activities are open to all ages and are first-come, first-served.

Check out some of the events below:


Friday, May 12, 2023

3pm – 3:45pm and 4pm – 4:45pm

Putting Green

Led by kung fu master David Fung from the New York Chinese Cultural Center, these family-friendly workshops give participants an excellent method of exercise and emphasize on learning basic stances, strikes, and techniques


Friday, May 12, 2023

4pm – 5pm

Upper Terrace

Bryant Park has partnered with CK Chu Tai Chi School for 20 years. Learn the basics of this traditional system of heath and self-defense, and improve harmony between body and mind. 



Friday, May 12, 20235:30pm – 6:30pm Reading Room

Led by teaching artist Angela Lai from the New York Chinese Cultural Center, this family-friendly workshop demonstrates how to write/paint with an ink brush and to learn the relationship between ancient Chinese pictographs and their modern-day ideographs. 


Friday, May 12, 2023

Upper Terrace 5pm – 6pm

Led by teaching artist Kitty Kan from the New York Chinese Cultural Center, this family-friendly workshop introduces participants to basic ribbon dance techniques. Come prepared to learn some fun movements and dance creatively with the ribbons.


Friday, May 12, 2023

6:30pm – 7pm

East side of the fountain

References: AAPI Heritage Month Celebration (bryantpark.org)

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Credit Workshop

Chase Bank came back to teach about how to make financial decisions that help maintain good credit. Both our students and teachers had a lot of questions about credit. They learned what they should and should not do to keep a good credit score. Thanks to the workshop, one student said he got to check his and his wife’s credit scores for the first time since he moved to the USA, and his wife who is not our student also thanked the workshop. It’s great news that our workshops not only benefit our students, but also their family members.

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