There is a small community of Singaporeans in the United States, consisting largely of expatriate professionals from Singapore and their families as well as international students. The bulk of Singaporeans in the U.S. reside in metropolitan areas along a coastline, with the highest[weasel words][clarification needed] population located within the corridor connecting Boston, New York and Washington DC. On the West Coast, most Singaporean Americans live within several hundred miles of Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area. The next highest concentrations are in Texas, followed by an enclave by the Great Lakes, near Chicago and Ann Arbor.
Singapore is a multi-ethnic country made up of mostly Chinese, Indian, and Malay people, so a Singaporean-American can be of many different ethnic groups.
Singaporeans have been coming to the Chicago area for work and school since the late 1960s. While a small number of families have settled permanently, the majority of Chicago's Singaporeans remain for short periods on visas as students or professionals. While the number of Singaporeans has fluctuated over time, community leaders estimated that between 200 and 300 Singaporeans lived in Chicago in 2000.
The Singaporean community in Chicago is close and well organized. Chicago Singaporeans come together for two major celebrations every year, the Chinese New Year and Singapore National Day. Food plays a central role in these events and is culturally important for Singaporeans, who spend a lot of time and effort to obtain authentic food. Penang Malaysian Restaurant caters many Singaporean events and serves as a gathering place for Chicago Singaporeans.