The American Business Council of Kuwait (ABCK) hosted its signature Fourth of July celebration this year at the Jumeirah Messilah Beach Resort & Spa. The Fourth of July or Independence Day is regarded as an important national holiday in the U.S. as it marks the anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Declaration of Independence in 1776.
The event kicked off with an opening remark delivered by ABCK’s Chairman- Mr. Oswaldo Rueda followed by ABCK’s Vice Chairman- Mr. Frank Belonus, who gave a brief introduction about ABCK’s operations and the event, and thanked sponsors for making this day possible. Following the speech, the event’s activities commenced with a BBQ and live music performed by the band. In attendance were over 300 guests consisting of ABCK members, U.S. service members and Kuwaiti citizens.
“Today the American Business Council- Kuwait (ABCK) celebrated the United States’ 4th of July Independence Day, traditionally a day of gathering with friends and family, BBQ’s, games and fireworks. With the support of our amazing sponsors and the remarkable support by the stunning Jumeriah Messilah Beach Resort & Spa, we were able to continue this great tradition for our ABCK members, guests, and to nearly 300 U.S. service members currently stationed here in Kuwait. ABCK was very honored to have the U.S. Ambassador, the Honorable Lawrence Silverman and Brigadier General Staudenraus be part of this great event and talk with all in attendance. An amazing Independence Day was had by all on the beautiful shores of Kuwait!”
Following a beautiful day of activities by the beach, the attendees gathered for the singing of the U.S. national anthem and recognition ceremony. Among the guests of honor was Ambassador Lawrence Silverman who thanked the event sponsors and ABCK for bringing this event to life and expressed his gratitude for the service men and the brave sacrifices they make for their country. “I would like to recognize all of the servicemembers here today. Your willingness to step forward and put yourselves in harm’s way, to protect the country and our citizens, is truly special, so I would like to say thank you to all of the troops here with us today, far away from home and your loved ones, for the sacrifices you make and all that you do to keep the United States the land of the free and the home of the brave”
Many ABCK Board members were also in attendance. ABCK’s Chairman Mr. Oswaldo Rueda and Executive Director Ms. Esra Cavdarli Menke recognized the sponsors Raytheon, Venice, IFA International Travel and Tourism, Gulf Facilities Trading and Corporation (GFT), and Jumeirah Messilah Beach Resort & Spa, and thanked the ABCK staff and volunteers for making this day possible. Among those recognized was Mr. Ayman Sawires, General Manager at IFA, Mr. Sam Juahari, CEO of GFT, Mr. Gary Menke, President of Raytheon, Kuwait and Mr.Tom Deren, Vice President for Venice.
The event concluded with a cake cutting ceremony, group picture, and concluding remarks by ABCK’s Vice Chairman, Frank Belonus. The cake cutting ceremony was carried out by Brigadier General Staundenraus, and the youngest soldier in the troop. Per tradition, the oldest and youngest soldiers present join hands in cutting the cake, symbolizing the generations that have served in the army.
American Business Council Kuwait is a non- profit organization who has been advocating American business interest in the State of Kuwait since 1985.