Columbus Day parade
Well, what do you know? It's Columbus Day long weekend, this weekend in America! And to celebrate, here in New York, today they had a big parade all along Manhattan's famous central boulevard, 5th Avenue. I'm not sure exactly what Columbus Day's for — and when I asked some locals what the story is behind it, they just said "I dunno, but we get Monday off" — so I guess it's a bit like our Queen's Birthday long weekend; it's just one of those holidays that you have, because as far as long weekends go, any excuse is a good excuse. Every country's gotta have at least one like that, right? Anyway, I just stumbled into the parade while I was wandering through Manhattan today, and I was pleasantly surprised with what I found.
Soldiers marching with flags in the parade.
Polish and Slavic community in the parade.
Most of the floats and marching groups in the parade seemed to be celebrating something for New York's "Polish and Slavic community". Not sure exactly what the deal was with this — perhaps it was Polish independence day today, as well, or something like that — but whatever the cause, there were a lot of Polish as well as American flags being waved around, and a lot of people dressed in stripy red and white. Added a bit more colour to the parade: although there was already plenty of red and white in there, those being two out of the three American flag colours!
Polish float outside the Empire State building.
Marching band playing the brass.
It was pretty crowded here, although not quite as crowded as some other parades I've seen on this trip. Not quite so many dodgy things going on around here, either. Despite the very overcast sky, it was nice and warm in New York today, and plenty of locals came out to show their patriotic spirit to land and liberty, and all that jazz. Nice show they put on here.