Posts Tagged ‘August 1st’
August 1st, 2011 – National Day message to the Swiss abroad by Micheline Calmy-Rey, President of the Swiss Confederation
For many of you our national day is a moment to take stock and to reflect. Wherever you may be on 1 August, you uphold the traditions of our country and confirm your attachment to Switzerland. This is why this is a very special day. Pride, love of your country, perhaps even homesickness: all these feelings may be experienced on 1 August. Take advantage of the opportunity and forget about your Helvetic modesty for a short while!
I would like to assure you that your love of Switzerland is reciprocated. Just as you feel attached to our country, Switzerland also cares about you, not only on 1 August but throughout the year. It is often said that the Swiss Abroad are ambassadors for Switzerland abroad. But in my view they are more than that. They embody our country’s attachment to the wider world. Thanks to you, the citizens of your host country learn more about our country. And if one day you come back to Switzerland to live, our economy will benefit from the experience that you have gained abroad. I would like to thank you for this contribution to our country’s prosperity.
Ladies and gentlemen
You all know that Switzerland has always depended on exchanges and trade with other countries. But in recent years our interconnectedness with the world has grown even stronger. You as members of the Swiss Abroad are the living proof of this.
A period of time spent abroad is almost a standard experience for many Swiss citizens. The ‘fifth Switzerland’ is extremely diverse. It includes pensioners in Spain, students in Germany, bankers in Singapore and development helpers in Tanzania. But I am also thinking of the growing number of persons with dual nationality, who in many cases facilitate our relations with their host countries. Their openness, their interest in people throughout the world and their adaptability are key qualities on the path to success.
The qualities that help you in your daily life have also helped Switzerland. Openness and adaptability have enabled our country to cope relatively well with the economic crisis of recent years. Today in many respects we are better off than other countries. But this also imposes an obligation: the obligation to show solidarity. Switzerland has again and again demonstrated its solidarity, even in the most recent past example of the deployment of Humanitarian Aid after the atomic disaster in Japan, or of Switzerland’s activity in connection with the upheavals in North Africa and in the Near East. I am proud of this Swiss solidarity.
Dear fellow countrymen and countrywomen,
On behalf of the Federal Council I sincerely wish you a happy 1 August.
The Swiss Centeris a new (currently virtual) “Swiss-made” marketing platform led by a team of experienced resident Swiss entrepreneurs who have deep experience in myriad industries, including engineering, travel and tourism, investments, fashion, retail marketing, and more.
The group is dedicated to helping Swiss businesses and organizations – with an emphasis on small- to mid-sized businesses, professional associations, interest groups or organizations – wishing to expand their reach into the Southern California market. Similarly, the organization will be available to aid Southern California entities considering expanding their market reach into Switzerland.
Under the encouragement and guidance of the Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce/LA, SwissCenterLA is independently organized as a not-for-profit, non-governmental, public-private collaboration, offering business development services in Los Angeles and Zürich, designed to complement the existing network of regional Swiss organizations and to boost Swiss interests in Southern California.
The Swiss Center Los Angeles seeks to play the role of “opportunity scout” by which it will help proactively identify California trends, products, services, and other expertise to help make them more apparent and accessible to its members.
Based in Greater Los Angeles, which has traditionally been an epicenter of Swiss activity in the U.S. as well as a gateway to the Pacific Rim, SwissCenterLA plans to offer core services tailored for its member-clients, including support with event planning, study tours, and other professional concierge-type services. SwissCenterLA plans to provide these services along with a state-of-the-art, Class A trade show- and event space, professional temporary guest offices for visiting professionals, along with, a 380-seat-state-of-the-art screening room, a media & PR center and more.
Maintaining its not-for-profit status, the organization is supported by in-kind and financial donations from corporations and individuals, through sponsorships, grants, membership dues, revenues generated by fee-for-service programs and commissions from outside vendors.
The SwissCenterLA is currently in discussions with management of its proposed location in the prestigious and highly visible “Red Building” (Inauguration planned for Fall 2012), the newest structure among the prestigious Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood. Ideally, the Swiss Center Los Angeles offices and gathering space will create a respectful and permanent “EXPO” site for Swiss business owners and entrepreneurs, giving Switzerland an unprecedented opportunity for a remarkable presence in Southern California’s marketplace for years to come.
View from Sunset Boulevard and all major Landmark Hotels = maximum visibility with a constantly changing audience, also considering this building will be featured all over the World and is to become the newest landmark in the City of Angels.The Red Building marks the completion of West Hollywood’s Pacific Design Center, designed by world-famous Argentinian Architect Cesar Pelli, known for creating some of the world’s tallest and most famous buildings, as well as other major urban landmarks.
Follow @SwissCenterLA on twitter or on facebook, or visit our pre-opening (virtual) home http://www.SwissCenterLA.org
Anne Marie, Thomas und Sarah
Anne Marie aus Schaffhausen ist zur Zeit bei ihrem Sohn und seiner Frau in Los Angeles auf Besuch. Für Thomas das typischste Schweizer Gericht ist eine Bratwurst mit Rösti. „Im Alpine Village gibts die beste Bratwurst in L.A.“, verrät der Küchenchef.
Ernest, Kristen, Dylan and Ernest Jr. (Mother Kuriko didn’t want to be in the picture)
Ernest, a father of three, was born in Los Angeles. However his parents, his mother was from Basel Stadt, his dad from Sankt Gallen, came to Southern California in the late 50s. They had a restaurant “La Petite Suisse” in Westwood between 1966 and 1984.
Molly, her son Chase and Erika are Swiss-Americans. They are dual citizens and carry Swiss passports, however, they have yet to visit the land their fathers came from. Erika’s dad himself hasn’t been to Switzerland since 1968 when he developed polio and found that his homeland is not very accessible to wheelchairs.
This family from Malibu demonstrates their Swiss pride every year with a trip to the Whittier Swiss park for 1. August celebrations. Their grandfather migrated from Switzerland to the US when Jack Warner, the head of Warner Bros., loved his cooking so much that he made him his personal chef.
Marlene Parker and Albert Wyss
It’s been years since Albert Wyss has been attending August 1st celebrations at Swiss park. The massage therapist and fitness trainer to the stars is originally from Kloten and he and his German friend, the comedienne Marlene Parker, were looking forward to a Bratwurst, Rivella and Merengue glacé.
Karen Elsener from Rheineck, SG, has been in the US for fifteen years. Like every year, her kids are looking forward to the crossbow shooting and face painting, the parents come for the Swiss food.
Steve and Christiane would have won the prize for most original costume, had there been such a contest. They’ve met 1974 in Los Angeles and one year later she moved to the US for love. This was their first time in Whittier since these Swiss Park virgins usually spend summers in Switzerland.
THANK YOU for playing the “roving reporter” and capturing the day’s Celebrity arrivals: the Swiss Families attending the August 1st Festivities, Gabriela Tscharner Patao, Former Radio 24 DJ and host of the talk show “Ziischtigs Club” on Swiss TV SF DRS.
Gaby has been living and working in Los Angeles as a journalist and foreign correspondent.
What a great day at the Swiss Park in Whittier, CA, about 20 minutes East from LA, off the 60. The event was masterfully organized by Lilo Holzer, Community Organizer and Producer of this traditional yearly Get-Together for the Swiss Community in the LA Area. Thank You Gabi Tscharner-Patao with daughter Leilani, who helped with documenting the day; more on that shortly!
The Helvetic.LA / Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce / Swiss Center LA booth was busy non-stop from 10am to 4pm, and dozens stopped by on their way home until 6pm to show support by getting an LA+ T-Shirt or Bumpersticker. (Yes, and online Store will follow shortly for those who forgot, didn’t have cash on hand or couldn’t attend 🙂 ).
It was fun sharing the booth with http://www.StreetBelt.com co-founder Reto Schürch, whose Recycled Fire-Hydrant-Marker-Fire-Hose-Belts were the Hippest item of the day! Reto’s Story is really interesting, knowing he’s been a Goalie for various Swiss Hockey Clubs (yes, he’s good friends with Jonas Hiller), and now involved in StreetBelt.com with two other visioneers, Hans-Jürg Kühni and Ciro Barisi.
Ladies and Gentlemen
Let us take a moment on our Swiss National Day to look back and reflect on Switzerland’s values and qualities.
On the first of August, Swiss nationals celebrate traditions and customs, and they feel the bond with their country whether they are at home or abroad. All this makes our Swiss National Day a special occasion.
Dear Swiss Abroad, you have come together today because of the close and genuine ties you have to your homeland. You, the 700,000 or so Swiss citizens abroad, work hard for the good of our country. In your host country, you represent the virtues to which Switzerland owes its good reputation. You embody the open mindset that has always served Switzerland well. You are an important calling card for our country. You also hold a mirror up to us. You have the necessary distance to be able to provide us with direct and honest feedback about our actions. You are our eyes and ears,because many things look different or better from the outside or from a distance.
The last few months have been difficult for many countries, Switzerland included. The financial and economic crisis has forced us all to adopt extraordinary measures. By maintaining a sense of proportion and a certain calm, we have weathered this crisis. We have positioned ourselves well. Today Switzerland is well placed, even very well placed when compared internationally. Unemployment figures are also falling. This is encouraging and offers hope for the future.
It is nonetheless better to err on the side of caution as it is still too early to speak of a turnaround. And events in recent months have shown that pressure from abroad is unlikely to diminish. We must therefore stand firm, yet at the same time be prepared to be more flexible in areas in which we can improve our position.
It is all the more important to foster good international relations, which makes you all the more important as ambassadors for our country. This is where you support us directly.
I can promise you this: even when the pressure intensifies and we have to be hard but fair to stand up for our interests abroad, Switzerland will, as always, remain true to its values of openness, solidarity, reliability and freedom. With qualities and virtues such as these, we will also be well equipped to overcome future crises!
On behalf of the Federal Council, I wish you a very happy first of August.
Doris Leuthard, President of the Federal Council
Audio Message (English), including the traditional ringing of the President’s hometown church bells, announcing the official Message by President Leuthard.