Dozens of local, citywide and state elected officials led the celebration. Some lawmakers, including Assemblyman Ron Kim, broke away to shake hands with and greet the thousands of people standing behind the barricades.
Led by grand marshal and organizer Peter Tu, leader of the Flushing Chinese Business Association, the officials also sang “God Bless America” during the parade. Korean, Chinese and Taiwanese American groups soon followed, some waving from decorative floats and others carrying banners.
Mayor Bill de Blasio didn’t attend the celebration but wished everyone observing the holiday a happy and healthy Year of the Rooster.
“As the proud city of immigrants, we cherish every opportunity to come together and embrace our city’s rich heritage,” de Blasio said in a statement. “We hope everyone is able to share this special time with their loved ones.”
The State Senate, led by Flushing’s Toby Ann Stavisky and Brooklyn’s Daniel Squadron, unanimously passed a resolution last week to commemorate the new year.
“Being born in the Year of the Rooster is a very important sign of intelligence, honesty, ambition,” Stavisky said, “and we hope that this will symbolize 2017.”