Bryant Park


U.S. Army Celebrates 239th Birthday

Army Chief of Staff Odierno returns to lead ceremonies.

Alison K. Connors

A great tradition continued at Bryant Park on Friday, June 13 as the U.S. Army commemorated its 239th birthday with a fascinating and patriotic array of drills, performances, and ceremonies. This year’s theme was America’s Army – Our Profession. Despite some damp weather, the Army pulled through and put on a terrific show.

The day began with free coffee for soldiers and visitors. In mid-morning, the USO Show Troupe of Metropolitan New York joined with the U.S. Army Band to perform a rousing selection of patriotic and pop tunes. Then, Chief of Staff of the Army General Ray Odierno presided over a swearing-in ceremony for future soldiers and cut the birthday cake. General Odierno also delivered the keynote address, during which he graciously thanked the people of New York City for their hospitality.   

Shortly after noon, the crowd was regaled with performances by the U.S. Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, U.S. Army Band “Downrange,” the U.S. Army Drill Team, Super Squad Soldiers from the 3rd Infantry (The Old Guard), the U.S. Military Academy Band “The Hellcats”, the USO Show Troupe, and the NYC Police Department Pipes and Drums.   

Bryant Park Corporation is honored to host this event, and proud that the Army continues to enjoy Bryant Park. This is the third consecutive year that the park has hosted these birthday activities, and we can only hope the tradition continues.

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