Veterans' Day in New York City is a truly impressive patriotic event, with daylong, city-wide events culminating in a spectacular parade that beautifully honors the Americans who have served in our military. The day starts with opening ceremonies at the Eternal Light Monument in Madison Square Park, where comments of remembrance are made by the mayor, other city officials, and guest speakers. Readings and musical tributes take place in between the remarks. The end of the opening ceremonies consist of a 21-rifle salute and the playing of Taps. The opening ceremony is open to the public, and veterans get preferential seating.
The parade, which travels down 5th Avenue from 26th to 56th Streets, includes over 20,000 participants. The parade, which has been going on for more than 90 years, features veterans from all wars and decades, ROTC students, local youth and civic groups, and high school marching bands from around the entire country. Military vehicles also are part of the parade. Veterans and their families are welcome to view the parade from the bleachers at 41st Street in front of the NYC Public Library. After the parade, a day-long street fair is held along 56th Street between Madison and 6th, where city vendors dole out local treats and souvenirs.