After Two Year Hiatus, Cambodian New Year Parade Returns For 2014

Keeping true on a promise made last year, the Cambodian Coordinating Council (Cam-CC) announced this week that for the first time since 2011, a Cambodian New Year Parade will again be hosted on Anaheim Street.

For the last two years, funding issues have prevented Long Beach’s rich Cambodian New Year festivities from including the iconic parade, which since 2005 had traversed the stretch of Anaheim St. designated as “Cambodia Town” with colorful floats, traditional and modern Cambodian dancers, musicians, pedicabs, cyclos and other performances by various ethnic groups. 

But early efforts to find sponsors for 2014 have paid off, according to Thy Chan (aka Tony Te), an event planning specialist and Cam-CC’s Event Coordinator. The parade is confirmed to take place on Sunday, April 6. 

“There was no choice but to have a parade this year,” said Te, who is organizing the parade for the first time. “People noticed when it didn’t happen, so there’s been more motivation than ever to make sure that it does.”

Since putting directed efforts into the marketing and sales side of parade planning, Te and his Cam-CC cohorts have secures major sponsors like the Port of Long Beach and Hustler Casino, who are providing enough money to ensure it will happen. Parade entries will help tie up the loose financial ends and there is also an IndieGoGo campaign to bring in extra donations from the community that will go directly into making the parade’s 2014 return the best ever.

PhotoGrid 1394217297986“Our funds are secure and so I don’t want people to think it’s not happening,” Te said, “but extra donations always help.”

The parade holds major significance for the Cambodian community of Long Beach. Not only did its creation mark the first time that larger cultural awareness was brought to the biggest population of Cambodians outside of Cambodia, but it also helped lead to the 2007 creation of the Cambodia Town designation.

“The reason we started it was that we wanted to celebrate the Cambodian culture and educate our young and the general population about this massive civilization that had existed for 2000 years before the Killing Fields,” said Pasin Chanou, Board Director of Cam-CC and Chairman of Cambodia Town, Inc., referring to the brutal Khmer Rouge regime which killed millions of people in the 1970s and sparked a massive influx of Cambodians to America. “[The Parade] brings back good memories. It brings back pride.”

Cambodian New Year–or Chaul Chnam Thmey in Khmer–starts on April 13 and ends on April 17 and will welcome in the Year of the Horse.

On April 19, Cam-CC will also be hosting its annual Cambodian New Year Celebration at El Dorado Park. The Celebrationhas been held each year, uninterrupted, since 2005. 

The Cambodian New Year Parade will take place Sunday April 6 starting at 10AM. The parade will start at Anaheim St. and Junipero Ave. and end at MacArthur Park.

To sign up your organization for the Cambodian New Year Parade, see the form below. For more information about becoming a vendor at the Cambodian New Year Celebration at El Dorado Park or to buy ad space in the souvenier program booklet, call Tony Te at (562) 212-5936 or email [email protected]

Read more:

Cambodian New Year Parade Entry Form 2014

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Sarah Bennett is a contributor to the Hi-lo and the editor-at-large at the Long Beach Post. She is also a professor at Santa Ana College where she was once a student before transferring to USC to earn her bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Sarah has written about music, art, food and beer in local, national and international publications for over a decade. An L.A. native and longtime resident of Long Beach, she is the co-founder of Long Beach Zine Fest and managing editor at theLAnd magazine. She never sleeps.