The History of the New York Tartan Day Parade:
The annual New York Tartan Day Parade began 19 years ago, in 1998, after the U.S. Senate passed Senate Resolution 155, which officially recognized April 6th as Tartan Day. This was followed by companion bill House Resolution 41, passed by the U.S. House of Representatives in 2005. On April 4, 2008, President George W. Bush signed a Presidential Proclamation making April 6 National Tartan Day.
In 1998, the first Tartan Day Parade, consisting of two pipe bands and a small but spirited group of Scottish Americans, was led by the very first Grand Marshal, Cliff Robertson.
Today the parade is a grand affair, featuring thousands of participants, including bands, dancers and clans.
On April 8, 2017, The Grand Marshal of the 19th Annual New York Tartan Day Parade will be Glasgow-born actor Tommy Flanagan.
The acclaimed actor has starred in Braveheart, Gladiator, and Alien vs Predator, as well as FX Network’s drama, Sons of Anarchy. He will be a starring role in the upcoming movie, Guardians of the Galaxy, Chapter 2.
Past Parade Grand Marshals:
From actors and screenwriters, to athletes and designers, the past New York Tartan Day Parade Grand Marshals have been talented Scots from all different walks of life.
Read about them here:
2016: Sam Heughan, Scottish actor best known for his role as Jamie Fraser in the Starz hit series Outlander.
2015: Co-Grand Marshals: Tricia Marwick, Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament (2011-2016) and Graham McTavish, Scottish television and film actor with an extensive career including roles in Outlander and The Hobbit Trilogy.
2014: Howie Nicholsby, Kilt designer and owner of “21st Century Kilts” in Edinburgh.
2013: Kevin McKidd, Scottish-American actor best known for his roles in ABC series Grey’s Anatomy and film Trainspotting.
2012: Brian Cox, acclaimed Scottish theatre and film actor who works with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
2011: Bob Winter, Lord Provost of Glasgow from 2007 until 2012.
2010: Rt. Hon. Alex Fergusson, Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament from 2007 until 2011.
2009: Alan Cumming, OBE, Tony, Emmy and Golden-Globe award-winning actor.
2008: Lawrence Tynes, Scottish-born former kicker for the New York Giants, winners of Super Bowl XVII.
2007: Rt. Hon. George Reid, Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament from 2003 until 2007.
2006: Brigadier Melville Jameson, Producer of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo from 1994 until 2006.
2005: Randall Wallace, Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Braveheart.
2002: Sir Sean Connery, Academy Award-winning actor and producer who was the first actor to portray James Bond in film.
1998: The late Cliff Robertson, Academy Award-winning actor with a film and television career that spanned half a century.
Friends and members of The American-Scottish Foundation®, join us in celebrating Tartan Day 2017 with “The World’s Finest Shortbread” – Walkers Shortbread!
Tartan Day is on April 6th – just days away! So why not celebrate with a biscuit or two?
Over a hundred years ago, the Walker family started baking shortbread at their bakery in the Speyside village of Aberlour, surrounded by the beautiful Scottish highlands. Today, Walkers products are now sold all over the world, using the same wonderfully simple recipe to produce that iconic Walkers taste!
To celebrate Tartan Day, Walkers Shortbread has a delicious deal for you!
Use the code TARTAN to receive your special Tartan Day treats!
This special offer expires on April 2nd, 2017, so place your orders now on the Walkers website, here.
NYC Tartan Week have announced that acclaimed Scottish actor Tommy Flanagan, will be Grand Marshal of the 19th Annual New York Tartan Day Parade on Saturday April 8th capping off a great week of events and celebration.
“It is an honor to celebrate my culture,” said Mr. Flanagan about his appointment to Grand Marshal. “I have great pride in my heritage. Although I now live in Malibu, I visit Scotland regularly with my family. I’ll have my daughter flying her flag forever.” Flanagan stars in the upcoming movie Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2, scheduled for release in May 2017.
Read the full report http://nyctartanweek.org/
The American-Scottish Foundation is proud to have a vibrant and growing platform of Arts and Culture programming, including our contribution to the Landmarks 50+ project.
Through this partnership, the ASF has developed the fascinating history of The Scots Who Built New York’s Landmarks, chronicling the contribution of Scottish Americans to the building of New York.
Recently, The Times of London published an article on how The American-Scottish Foundation® is embarking on this second phase of The Scots Who Built New York project with the development of an App and A Map. As The Times notes this will be so useful to visitors to the City, and here at the ASF, we are excited and proud to be undertaking this next phase of the project.
With research undertaken by Architect and Architectural historian John Kinnear, The American-Scottish Foundation has developed a photographic series of talks exploring the huge contribution of Scottish-Americans to the building of New York.
To date, the five The Scots Who Built New York lectures have reflected on eras of architecture as exemplified by a leading Scottish architect of the time. Noted within the research and talks are references to other contemporary, leading Scottish American architects.
Now, the Scots who built New York’s landmarks will literally be put on the map by the newest addition to the project. The Scots who created important buildings like Carnegie Hall and Penn Station will be celebrated by a Walking Tour App, and NYC Map. With our work around this project we will expand our research, noting additional Scottish-American Landmark buildings that were built over the last 350 years.
As ASF’s executive director, Camilla Hellman, explains, the research for the project has taken over 18 months. “Now we are looking to move on to create a city map and walking tour app which will allow visitors to discover the leading buildings that Scottish-Americans have been responsible for,” she said.
As The Scots Who Built New York project has shown, people are often amazed to learn how much of NYC’s famous skyline is the result of the innovative work of Scottish architects, developers, and engineers. According to Ms Hellman, Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel, the author and director of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Centre, said she has now come to realize that “all the leading landmarks in New York appear to have been built by Scots.”
The Scottish diaspora has truly been a part of New York’s fabric since the city’s early days. As John Kinnear notes, “Scottish-Americans and Scottish architects, in particular, have been a leading force in the developing of New York and remain so today. We are now looking to bring this important and fascinating history to a wider audience through the walking tour app and map, and ultimately, a coffee-table book entitled The Scots Who Built New York.”
The forthcoming project will spotlight various locations, like the designs of architect Charles McKim, including the Morgan Library and Museum, and the Morningside Heights campus of Columbia University. The map will also feature Carnegie Hall, which was financed by Scots philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie, and the Empire State Building, which was designed by William Lamb.
Other highlights will include Gracie Mansion, which was originally built for Archibald Gracie of Dumfries, President Ulysses Grant’s mausoleum, which was designed by John Duncan, and St Andrew’s Golf Club, the oldest golf club in the US.
We are looking to have the App and Map for April 2017, to coincide with the Tartan Week celebrations that will take place in New York City at that time.
Would you like to join us as a Sponsor or Patron of the exciting next phase of this project?
Find out more about The Scots Who Built New York, and how you can support the project on the ASF website, here.
Images via americanscottishfoundation.com.
Sam Heughan, Grand Marshal of the 2016 New York Tartan Day Parade has been named Barbour’s first Global Brand Ambassador of the British clothing company. Heughan, who stars as Jamie Fraser in the mega hit drama “Outlander” , will develop his own capsule collection for Barbour, made with the brand’s signature tartans, which are based on the Ayrshire District Tartan from where the Barbour family originated in the 13th century.
“I am delighted to be working with Barbour and feel very privileged that they have chosen me to be their first Global Brand Ambassador,” he said in a statement.
“Being Scottish, I grew up with the brand and have always been a big fan — being born in the same rural area as John Barbour, in the south of Scotland.” He also respects the longevity of the brand saying that he’s intrigued by how Barbour “has adapted yet retained its strong identity.”
“I have a great passion for the company and their employees that feels more like I’ve been welcomed into their extended family. I very much look forward to designing my own capsule collection based on this ethos and to representing the brand in the UK, the US and internationally.”
To learn more of the 2016 Parade and keep up to date on plans for 2017 visit NYC Tartan Week the central website for the Parade which is organized by Saint Andrew’s Society of the State of New York, New York Caledonian Club, The American-Scottish Foundation® and Clan Campbell
We are looking forward to the first introductions to the Barbour Collection. Read more via the Barbour Blog:http://www.barbour.com/blog/sam-heughan-barbour-brand-ambassador
In 1998, April 6th was declared National Tartan Day. Since then celebrations of scottish heritage and pride have taken place throughout the United States, and nowhere more than New York who top off a week long celebration of events throughout the City, with the annual New York Tartan Day Parade.
This years celebrations took on an added dimension as the hugely popular series Outlander, premiered their second season on the evening of the Parade – and the chosen Grand Marshal for the Parade was non other than the shows leading actor, Sam Hueghan. Heughan plays the dashing Highlander, Jamie Fraser in the series.
Outlander fans were planning for months to come together in New York for the Parade and on hearing that Heughan was Grand Marshal the excitment grew. Many of the fans have visited Scotland or plan to, and so the Scotland’s national tourism agency VisitScotland wrapped a double decker bus for the Parade with the image of the Callanish Stones and messaging, encouraging New Yorkers to book their tickets to the land that inspired Outlander.
The series is filmed throughout Scotland, and already after the first series, premier locations featured in the series have seen an increase in visitors.
Locations include Doune Castle, Culloden, Falkland and Culross, all of which have enjoyed a dramatic rise in visitor numbers.
Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said: “Scotland Week is an opportunity for members of the Scottish tourism industry to meet with prospective visitors from the hugely important North American market, with events such as our Diaspora Breakfast always proving popular. Outlander has taken the world by storm and it is important that we capitalise on the continued success of a series in which Scotland really is the star.
“With its stunning imagery of the Callanish Stones, which are just like the ones that play such a pivotal role in the series, our bus is sure to be a big hit during the hugely popular Tartan Day Parade, which regularly attracts thousands of spectators. Hopefully it will encourage event more people to look into booking a trip to Scotland and explore the land that inspired Outlander.”
Outlander fans in New York during Scotland Week also enjoyed a special event taking place at NYC Beer Authority on the evening of April 8th. The Belhaven Brewery-sponsored gathering saw a number of Scottish businesses showcasing their Outlander-inspired wares, including jewellery makers Hamilton & Young, Walkers Shortbread, tour operator Mary’s Meanders and “Outlander Herbalist” Claire MacKay.
Outlander is based on the best selling series of books by Diana Gabaldon.
For more information on Outlander and Scotland, go to www.visitscotland.com/