New Rochelle Celebrates Bastille Day

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Members of New Rochelle's Sister City Initiative Committee and Sister City Committee, as well as city staff, were on hand at the queen city of the sound's Bastille Day celebration Friday in front of City Hall. Photo Credit: Justin Stock

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – The New Rochelle Sister City Committee presented a Bastille flag Friday during a ceremony in front of City Hall to celebrate the queen city of the sound’s founding by the French Huguenots more than 320 years ago.

“With liberty and freedom come duty and observation of the liberty that comes at the price of blood,” said Sister City Initiative Chairperson Peter Korn. “We thank all of those who have served of themselves so that we can have our freedom,” he said.

July 14, a national holiday in France, honors the day in history when French King Louis XVI’s Bastille, or political prison, was taken over by soldiers to mark the beginning of the French revolution, the end of the king’s authority, and a new way of life for the citizens of the country. This is similar to the signing of the Declaration of Independence, which led to the American Revolution.

Also at Friday’s event — the first of many to mark the occasion — New Rochelle’s 325th Anniversary Committee Chairperson Marianne Sussman announced that an entry by graphic artist and freelance designer Deborah Haley was selected as the committee’s logo. Designs by Jesse Sanchez and Andrew Morejon were the other two top selections. The banner logos will be put up throughout the city before Thanksgiving.

“This is a day really for us to come into our history,” said Sussman.

The anniversary celebrates the arrival of the Huguenots from La Rochelle, France, in 1688 and the immigration and development that have shaped New Rochelle’s suburban life today.

Friday’s ceremony was presented by the Sister City Initiative, which aims to strengthen the 324-year bond of friendship between New Rochelle and La Rochelle.

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