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The National Puerto Rican Day Parade returns to 5th Avenue this Sunday, June 12th. With it comes an amazing group of honorees, tributes and festivities. Check out this year’s deserving recipients and participants.

Padrino & Madrina

What makes the Puerto Rican Day parade so special is the cultural component. Culture that cannot be found anywhere else.  A big part of that are parade Padrino and Madrina. This year Grammy nominated recording artist, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Fat Joe, will be honored as Padrino (Godfather). The Bronx native has bridged the intersection of hip-hop and Latin music. Amassing several multiplatinum studio albums, mixtapes, singles and collaborations. Including anthems like “Lean Back,” and “All the Way Up”.

Fat Joe Yes

Most recently in January 2022, Joe teamed up with the New York City Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City to create the Bronx Relief Fund. Raising over $1 million for families impacted by the tragic Bronx apartment fire at Twin Parks North-West.

Joining the procession with the title of Madrina (Godmother) will be radio personality and 2020 Radio Hall of Fame Inductee, Angie Martinez. Martinez is known as “The Voice of New York” and considered to be the reigning queen of radio. With nearly 20 years of on-air experience, the Power 105.1 host is also an author, actress, television host, recording artist and activist for youth and health awareness. 

Grand Marshall

The Grand Marshal of this year’s parade is U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. A Connecticut native born to Puerto Rican parents Secretary Cardona is committed to ensuring equitable and meaningful educational opportunities for all students of color. Calling for increased cultural awareness and competency in schools through the country.

Under his leadership, the U.S. Department of Education approved use of nearly $4 billion as part of the American Rescue Plan fund to rebuild the school system, which was impacted by natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Parade King

Joining Secretary Cardona in leading the procession will be none other than reggaetonero Nicky Jam. Mr. Jam is being honored as the 2022 King. We all know his success in the music industry. What may not be as well-known is his philanthropic and humanitarian work. From raising money to help at-risk and vulnerable children  to offering aid and relief to victims of natural disasters in Puerto Rico and various countries in Latin America. Jam will join the Parade procession up Fifth Avenue on top of La X96FM EL RITMO DE NEW YORK’S float.

Special Tributes to El Yunque and Posthumous Honorees

Every year, the parade celebrates Puerto Rican history, culture and achievement across all facets of society. Spanning art, science, education, public service, entertainment, commerce. 2022 is no exception.

El Yunque National Forest is the only tropical rainforest in the U.S. National Forest System. Spanning over 28,000 acres in northeast Puerto Rico. A national treasure and cultural symbol since the time of the indigenous Taíno people. El Yunque is known for its spectacular beauty and rich biological diversity.  The N.P.R.D.P. pays special tribute to El Yunque, it’s cultural significance of each and encourage support for efforts geared toward its preservation.

2022 also marks milestone anniversaries in the legacies of two legendary Puerto Rican luminaries. 100 years since the birth of Bobby Capó and 50 years since the death of Roberto Clemente. Capó was an internationally acclaimed singer/songwriter, television host and musical director. His distinguished career in both Puerto Rico and New York City produced beloved songs that have been translated to multiple languages and sung by the likes of pioneering French entertainer, Josephine Baker. 

The legendary Roberto Clemente, still considered by many to be the greatest right-fielder of all time. His success on the field was matched by his good works off the field. Clemente was a vocal activist that called for equal treatment in Major League Baseball. He often delivered baseball equipment and food to impoverished communities in need. On December 31, 1972, he died in a plane crash at the age of 38 while en route to deliver aid to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.

The N.P.R.D.P. celebrates their memories and accomplishments, naming each 2022 posthumous honorees.

With this line up, the 2022 parade has the makings to be one of the best ever. If you can’t be on 5thAvenue this Sunday, do not fear. The in person celebration will be broadcast live on WABC-TV, Channel 7, starting at noon EDT.  

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