Columbus Day Parade 2023: 79th annual celebration celebrates Italian-American culture

The parade was broadcast on Channel 7, WABC-TV and streamed on ABC 7 New York

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Monday, October 9, 2023
79th annual Columbus Day Parade celebrates Italian-American culture
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The 79th Annual Columbus Day Parade returned to Fifth Avenue in New York City to celebrate Italian-American heritage and culture. Sonia Rincon has the latest.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- The 79th Annual Columbus Day Parade returned to Fifth Avenue in New York City on Monday afternoon.

The city's celebration of its Italian cultural roots is a tradition connecting those with a little or a lot of Italian heritage to ancestors who made this their home.

The mayor and governor took time to march as they always do, but this year they're grappling with the uncertainty of New Yorkers in Israel.

"I spoke to the president of Israel, Herzog yesterday, offering our support our sympathies, and also we stand ready to act. We stand with Israel and to support their efforts, and also to bring New Yorkers home," New York Governor Kathy Hochul said.

Mayor Eric Adams returned from his Latin America trip as the conflict was unfolding in Israel, stepping up security around the city.

"Whatever happens on the international stage, it plays out in the streets of New York City and we have an obligation to keep New Yorkers safe," Adams said.

And that security he says will be visible and invisible, allowing the city's religious and cultural traditions, and protests, to continue peacefully, but well monitored for any potential threats.

The parade started on Fifth Avenue at 44th Street and continued north along Fifth Avenue to 72nd Street.

This year's Grand Marshal was Beth Paretta, CEO and Team Principal of Paretta Autosport. Paretta is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and advocate who has demonstrated an ongoing dedication to supporting young women through educational initiatives.

Fellow honorees included long-standing CCF Member Don DeCarlo, New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, Retired Justice Janet DiFiore, and Father Zach Presutti, founder of Thrive for Life, an organization devoted to assisting behind and beyond prison walls.

Monday started with a Mass at Saint Patrick's Cathedral, presided by Cardinal Dolan.

The Columbus Citizens Foundation's most visible philanthropic focus is scholarships for deserving students who may not have the opportunity to realize their dreams of success. To date, the Foundation has awarded over $36 million in scholarship funding to deserving students since the program's inception.

For more information, please visit the Columbus Citizens Foundation.


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