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Chinatown-Little Italy Historic District to be Celebrated Sunday

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On Sunday, Governor David Paterson is coming downtown to read a proclamation, formally declaring Little Italy and Chinatown a single historic district.  It will be the kickoff of Marco Polo Day, an event celebrating the declaration. Also planned, musical performances by both Italian and Chinese artists and, of course, lots of good food. 

Last month, we reported the New York State office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation had decided to approve the historic designation in recognition of the unique contributions made by Italian and Chinese
immigrants.

At a news conference today at Da Nico Restaurant on Mulberry Street, Victor Papa, president of the Two Bridges Neighborhood Council, discussed the importance of the designation. He said, Chinatown and Little Italy, co-existing side by side for generations, form the "most harmonious community that has ever existed in New York." Also at today's news conference, Yustin Yu, president of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association. Going forward, Pappa and Yu agreed the two communities would work closely to plan and promote neighborhood-wide events.  Acknowledging that businesses in Chinatown and Little Italy are struggling, they vowed to lobby city officials for help in promoting the new historic district and helping businesses thrive.

Marco Polo Day festivities will begin at 130pm, on Grand Street, between Mulberry and Mott. If it's raining, the event will move inside to the SPQR Restaurant, 133 Mulberry Street.

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