Philadelphia, PA - The South Philadelphia String Band has chosen “Awaken the Dragon” as their theme for the 2017 Sugarhouse Casino Mummers Parade.
Last year, the South Philadelphia String Band took home the 1st place trophy in the 2016 Sugarhouse Casino Mummers Day Parade with their Mexican theme of “Dia De Los Muertos.”
Jay Nestor is the Co-theme Chairman of the SPSB and told PHL17, throughout the year, Mummers within their organization engaged with leaders of the Chinese community to immerse themselves in the culture.
Nestor explained, "We don't know it all and we need to be helped and educated on how we can do this in the right respectful way…We've reached out to members of the Asian community, members of the Chinese community, and we brought in people throughout the year."
Members of the string band learned from the leader of the Philadelphia Asian Film Festival, along with a director of Asian American studies at a prestigious local university, to get input about costumes, props, and ways to best represent the Chinese community during their performance.
"Building those relationships and having that back-and-forth, we gave them the opportunity to help us learn," said Nestor. “I think when we do this presentation on New Year’s Day, by and large the vast majority of the people who watch will see that we are honoring the culture."