New York, Mar 17 (EFE).- New York City’s famed St. Patrick’s Day Parade, a celebration of the United States’ Irish diaspora that is known for its bagpipes, drums and green-clad revelers, returned to Midtown Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue on Thursday after a two-year interruption due to coronavirus restrictions.
Thousands of New York Army National Guard members and police marched at the head of the parade, which kicked off at 11 am and was held amid a light drizzle, a demonstration of the large Irish-American presence among law enforcement and the military.
Although it took place during normal school and work hours, families and groups of friends wearing green-colored T-shirts, scarves, hats, necklaces and many other items of clothing and carrying the flags of Ireland and the United States lined the parade route.
But the stars of the show were the various groups of bagpipers who made their way dressed in kilts and bearskin hats to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the most important parish church for New York City’s Catholic community, and then on to Central Park.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams, who stopped off at a pair of Irish pubs and enjoyed a couple of pints of Guinness before taking part in the parade, urged people to fill the streets with joy as a symbol of the Big Apple’s spirit of strength and resilience.
While the parade up Fifth Avenue is the biggest in New York City and around the world, similar ones were held on Thursday in other neighborhoods in the five boroughs.
Elsewhere in the US, Chicago held its St. Patrick’s Day parade last weekend, while Bostonians will hold theirs on Sunday.
But the parade in New York City from 44th Street to 79th Street was just the beginning of Thursday’s festivities.
The party is sure to continue throughout the afternoon and late into the night at Irish pubs throughout the Big Apple. EFE