New York City’s 35th annual Dominican Day Parade was in full effect Sunday (Aug. 14), even amid sweltering temperatures. Thousands of spectators in attendance—Dominicans and non-Dominicans alike—rode a heatwave of 105 degrees just to enjoy the island’s vibrant culture through food, music and arts.
According to NBC News, the Big Apple is the home to approximately 750,000 people of Dominican heritage, something that was clearly evident over the weekend. Participants dressed in red, white and blue marched their way down the Avenue of the Americas to the beat of la güira (a Dominican instrument), while others simply soaked in the melodious chants of this year’s buzzing crowd. The beautifully costumed devils, or the “mascarao” as natives call them, engaged with the crowd through dance and the swinging of their whips. The parade gave everyone a flavorful taste of home, and if Dominican natives weren’t home sick before, they sure were after Sunday’s festivities.
Celebrities were also present, including Lin-Manuel Miranda and Grand Marshall and beloved singer-songwriter Juan Luis Guerra, who was cheerfully welcomed to the parade with pride by his fellow people. While the parade was to unite and celebrate the island’s culture all together, it was especially dedicated to Dominican women and their accomplishments.
A photo posted by Dez Santana | NYC (@dezsantanaphoto) on
Some of the amazing women acknowledged at the parade were Nuestra Belleza Latina star Clarissa Molina, Senior Advisor at the Office of New York State Senator Adriano Espaillat and the late Mirabal sisters, three sisters who died fighting to take down Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo in the ’50s. The recognition of all these women vibrated wildly across the streets of the city, from Downtown Manhattan to Washington Heights. Bachata, merengue and tipico (all genres originated in the Dominican Republic) filled the streets leading up to a very hot, but successful Dominican Day Parade!