Very little can come close to beating the hubbub of Christmas in Midtown Manhattan. This year is going to be no different. Santa Claus will be accompanied by dancing Chinese dragons, to really light up the city. They will be performing at the Fifth Annual East Meets West Christmas Parade which can be enjoyed through Little Italy and Chinatown. At the parade – which kicks off at Mulberry and Canal Streets – one will be able to view a colorful array of Asian and Italian traditions, along with marching bands, feature floats and more. Allegedly, this is set to be the city’s second largest parade (Macy’s Thanksgiving one being the largest).
It was in 2006 that the parade’s organizers decided to set their sights even higher and significantly expand the parade. Today, it is a collaboration between the Little Italy Merchants Association and the Chinatown Partnership. Until then, Little Italy did it on its own (for around three decades) but with the additional input of Chinatown, it is really something quite magical.
Bridging the Cultural Gap?
Indeed, while Little Italy and Chinatown have geographically been pretty close-knit in the Lower Manhattan area for over a century, they haven’t worked together like this. But now this could all be changing. In 2010, the two were given joint recognition on the National Register of Historic Places and they also banded together to bring in World Trade Center tourists to visit the area.
So, maybe with the holiday spirit in the air, the Christmas season will do even more to bridge the unnecessary gaps that exist between the two.