The society was formed by leaders of the Danish community of New York in 1959 in preparation for the forthcoming royal visit of Their Majesties King Frederik IX and Queen Ingrid. The visit led to the establishment of an ongoing organization committed to social and cultural events, which has played a meaningful role in the greater New York area and across the country.
Through the Society’s efforts, Denmark Day was celebrated at the New York World’s Fair, on May 8, 1965, honored by the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Benedikte; Danish Liberation Day was proclaimed by then Mayor John Lindsay on May 4, 1970; The Metropolitan New York Chapter of The Rebild National Park Society was formed to stimulate Danish-American participation in the Rebild July Fourth Celebration of America’s Independence Day. The Society also led the Danish American celebration of the 1976 bicentennial of the founding of the United States. Over the years the “Person of the Year" award has been given at an annual dinner dance to a person who has contributed meaningfully to the bonds between the United States and Denmark. Over the years the list of recipients have included friends like comedian and musician Victor Borge, newsman Walter Cronkite, ballet master Peter Martins, global businessman Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller, Academy Award filmmaker Bille August, and members of the Royal family. Today the program reflects both the celebration of traditional Danish culture and modern Denmark as it presents itself through today’s culture and arts.