Edison (New Jersey), July 10 - Over 15,000 South Asian Americans gathered in a New Jersey park to celebrate the American Independence Day with a cultural programme by Indian, Chinese, Jewish and American performers and a spectacular firework display.
The July 4 event at the sprawling Edison Municipal Park also featured plenty of food booths and kids rides, according to event organisers South Asian Community Outreach (SACO).
"This celebration is very significant," said guest of honour state senator Samuel D. Thompson calling it "a loud expression by the South Asian community, whose members have contributed a great deal in sustaining the economy of New Jersey."
The event was sponsored by TV Asia, JFK Health Care Systems and Edison Lions Visionary Club.
SACO founder and chairman Sam Khan said the organisation's objective is to build a bridge between various ethnic groups in the diverse Central Jersey community and create social, cultural and political awareness among the South Asian community in America.
SACO will provide South Asian immigrants with an opportunity for transition and integration into the community, he said noting the South Asian community is moving forward to be a force to reckon with in mainstream America.
"We are connected with our roots while making our contributions as responsible citizens of the United States," he said.
"People of South Asian origin are proud to be part of the American culture", said Piyush Patel, Chairman & leader of the celebration committee.
"We are celebrating the American Independence Day as our way to express our gratitude to this great nation," he said.
Other prominent attendees included state senator Joe Kyrillos, Edison mayor Antonio Ricigliano, Edison Council president Robert Karabinchak, Tom Lankey and Edison Chambers of Commerce President Barbara Roos. (IANS)