Just in time for Newark's Portugal Day Parade in the Ironbound, Gov. Phil Murphy has signed a resolution designating June 10 as Portugal Day in New Jersey.
“New Jersey has one of the largest concentrations of Portuguese-Americans in the nation, and I am honored to sign this resolution to celebrate the contributions this community has made to the Garden State,” Murphy said.
“From social and economic impact to the community’s history and culture, the Portuguese community has enriched and shaped this great state and nation,” the governor said.
Newark has one of the largest concentrations of Portuguese in New Jersey, mostly in the Ironbound neighborhood. The resolution was sponsored by the three legislators who represent the Ironbound community, Sen. M. Teresa Ruiz and Assemblywomen Eliana Pintor Marin and Shanique Davis-Speight. Other lawmakers from around the state with large Portuguese populations also sponsored the resolution.
“One of New Jersey’s greatest assets is the diversity of our communities, from our Highlands to the Palisades, our state is filled with incredible cultural and geographical landscapes," Ruiz said.
"Immigration has always been a part of Newark’s social fabric, and our communities are stronger when we celebrate each other’s heritage and traditions," the senator said. "Our Portuguese community has had strong ties to Newark’s Ironbound since the 1870’s, and their cultural and economic impact over the last 150 years has been significant. I join you in celebrating this year’s Portugal Day celebration and look forward to seeing a more prosperous future for all immigrant communities across the nation.”
June 10th was selected as Portugal Day to commemorates the life of Luís Vaz de Camões, a Portuguese literary icon who died on June 10, 1580. He is considered the Portuguese-language version of Shakespeare, Vondel, Homer, Virgil and Dante.
“This resolution helps celebrate the contributions that Portuguese and Portuguese-Americans make to New Jersey,” Pintor Marin, Davis-Speight and other Assembly sponsors said in a joint statement. “Most notably in Newark’s Ironbound section, the Portuguese community’s rich history, unique culture, and delectable cuisines attract local, national and international visitors."
Newark's Portuguese Day Parade draws some 300,000 people to the Ironbound every year to celebrate Portuguese culture and cuisine. This year's Portuguese Day Parade begins on Sunday at 2 p.m.