The Little Neck-Douglaston Memorial Day Parade, instituted in 1927, has grown to become the nation’s largest, and in any year you can usually find NYC’s contingent of Congressmen, the NYS governor, NYC mayor, and at least one of NYS’s two senators. The parade actually begins in Little Neck and spans two municipalities in two counties.
While large flags are placed on utility poles along the parade route on Northern Boulevard, smaller flags can be found on lawns throughout the neighborhood, placed a few days before the parade. The flags are distributed by Mohsen Zandieh, an immigrant from Iran and owner of the Arash real estate firm on Northern and 251st Street. Over 6000 flags are sometimes distributed, and Arash has sponsored the FDNY pipe band for the parade in the past.
This year, the flags seem to be confined to Little Neck Parkway exclusively and unlike previous years, they weren’t placed within Westmoreland Gardens, where the world FNY headquarters is located, but I’m glad to see the tradition continue in some way.