Columbus Day Parade Kicks Off on Fifth Avenue

The parade runs from Fifth Avenue and 44th Street and north to 72nd Street. It's organized by the Columbus Citizens Foundation

Monday, Oct 8, 2012  |  Updated 2:04 PM EDT
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West Indian Day Parade 2012

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The Columbus Day Parade has Fifth Avenue awash in red, white and green.

Monday's parade includes a float bearing a giant head of Christopher Columbus.

Police officers are wearing sashes of red, white and green, and thousands of people are waving Italian flags and cheering from the sidewalks.

Rosie Leone says she enjoyed some limoncello — an Italian liqueur — before coming out to the parade with a friend. She says she's celebrating her Italian heritage.

The parade runs from Fifth Avenue and 44th Street and north to 72nd Street. It's organized by the Columbus Citizens Foundation.

The foundation says the parade includes about 35,000 participants and about 1 million spectators. It says it's the largest celebration of Italian-American culture in the world.

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