← Back to News page
MAYOR BLOOMBERG TOASTS THE STEUBEN PARADE
German-American Friendship Month is officially on.
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg kicked off a month full of German-American festivities at a reception at the German Consulate on Monday, September 10. In front of a cheering crowd, the Mayor had some Bratwurst and even lifted a Stein, clearly enjoying the culinary foundation of German-American culture.
After greeting the crowd and taking pictures with the Steuben Parade Court and some dignitaries, the Mayor joined a little ceremony underneath the impressive Steuben Parade flag. "We are honored to have you with us," said German Consul General Busso von Alvensleben to the Mayor, who gave his first ever visit to the Consulate building. The Consul General used his remarks to thank Bloomberg for his efforts to support German-American relations. "As Germans, we are grateful for many decades of friendship with the United States of America", said von Alvensleben.
Steuben Parade General Chairman Lars Halter used his remarks to talk about German-American Friendship Month and some of the events hosted by the German-American Committee of Greater New York. They include a lecture on Steuben´s time in New York City that brought to light details that the Mayor himself had not been familiar with. "Steuben lived on what is now the Lower East Side," said Halter before mentioning other German-Americans who have shaped life in New York City, including John Roebling, builder of the Brooklyn Bridge, and Emmanuel Leutze, who´s painting "Washington Crossing the Delaware River" is the centerpiece of the newly opened "American Wing" at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In a jab at Mayor Bloomberg´s highly criticized soda-ban, which limits the sale of soda to cups under 32 ounces, Lars Halter reassured the Mayor of the full support of the community. "As German-Americans, we strongly believe that glasses over a certain size should be reserved only for beer," Halter said to a cheering crowd, while presenting the Mayor with a "Masskrug", a one liter glass of Hofbräu, one of the best known and most traditional German beers. The Mayor appreciated the gesture and didn´t waste much time before drinking from the giant glass, that, by his own law, would not be allowed to be served if it held soda instead of beer.
In his own remarks, Mayor Bloomberg gave his appreciation to what German immigrants have brought to New York City over centuries. Well aware of the details of German immigration to America, the Mayor talked about former German neighborhoods that have since vanished due to the strong integration of Germans in the general American society. He gave Chairman Halter a Proclamation declaring September 2012 "German-American Friendship Month" in New York City and wished the community well for the upcoming Steuben Parade on September 15. It is not yet clear, whether the mayor himself will participate in the march up Fifth Avenue.