German-American Steuben Parade/Upper East Site
German-American Steuben Parade returns to the Upper East Side | Upper East Site

German-American Steuben Parade Takes Over Fifth Avenue This Saturday

Back with in-person festivities for a second year since the Covid-19 pandemic forced the celebration to go virtual, the 65th Annual German-American Steuben Parade takes over Fifth Avenue this Saturday, September 17th, with a show of pride and celebration of German, Austrian and Swiss-American culture and traditions to the Upper East Side. 

German-American Steuben Parade/Upper East Site
Marching bands will appear at Saturday’s German-American Steuben Parade | Upper East Site

The Steuben Parade kicks off at noon on Saturday, forming at East 68th Street and going north up Fifth Avenue on a route stretching to East 86th Street— featuring elaborate costumes, marching bands, dance groups and a total of 14 decorated parade floats, according to organizers.

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Participants come to the city from across the Tri-State area, Pennsylvania and even as far away as Virginia, organizers say, led by cadets from West Point Military Academy’s German Language Club. 

German-American Steuben Parade/Upper East Site
Last year, gymnasts performed on a moving parade float | Upper East Site

This year, Steuben Parade organizers say they’re also hosting eleven groups from overseas, including German bands, Karneval groups and hunting clubs.

You may even see some gymnasts performing a high-flying routine on parallel bars attached to a moving parade float— or even an old timey orange Volkswagen Thing, packed with children waving German flags, like the ones that traveled the parade route through the Upper East Side last year.

German-American Steuben Parade/Upper East Site
An orange VW Thing on last year’s parade route | Upper East Site

FOX 5 news reporter Linda Schmitt has been tapped to serve as the Steuben Parade announcer on Saturday, while Dirk Breuer, Mayor of Hürth, Germany, and  Ambassador Axel Dittmann from the German Embassy in Washington, DC, will serve as co-Grand Marshals.

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Unfortunately, grandstand tickets are no longer available for purchase, however, you can get a great view from the sidewalks along the parade route.

German-American Steuben Parade/Upper East Site
Costumed participants in last year’s German-American Steuben Parade | Upper East Site

The Steuben Parade was first held in 1957 then predominantly German-American neighborhood of Ridgewood, Queens. 

A year later, the festivities would move to Fifth Avenue on the Upper East Side, an area also known for its large German-American population at the time.

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