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Multicultural St. Pat’s For All Parade Held In Queens

(Photo/Sophia Hall, WCBS 880)

(Photo/Sophia Hall, WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An early St. Patrick’s Day was held in Queens Sunday, by a group that says the Fifth Avenue Parade set to take to the street in about two weeks is not inclusive.

The St. Pat’s for All Parade was held Sunday afternoon, beginning its route at 47th Street and Skillman Avenue in Sunnyside, Queens, and ending at Woodside Avenue and 58th Street.

The parade included puppets, bagpipers, gay groups, and the Shannon Gaels Football Club.

In published reports, organizer Brendan Fay has said he and other participants in the Queens parade took issue with the larger Fifth Avenue parade, which has turned away groups marching under gay banners on the grounds that political displays are not appropriate.

Fay said in a New York Times report that this year’s parade was to include representatives of numerous world cultures, including Pakistani, Bengali, Bolivian, Ecuadorean, Chinese and Korean groups, as well as a group of young black and Latino step-dancers who came from the Bronx.

The FNDY Emerald Society Pipes and Drums corps also marched for the first time, after Fay spent many years as a lone bagpiper because other groups would not participate, the newspaper reported.

Fay founded the parade in 2000, after twice being arrested at three St. Patrick’s parades the year before as he tried to march with a gay rights group, the newspaper reported.

A St. Patrick’s Day Parade was also held Sunday in Belmar, N.J., which was devastated by Superstorm Sandy.

And on Saturday, a St. Patrick’s Day parade was held in a different part of Queens. Residents gathered on the streets of the Rockaways and said it was the Sandy-ravaged peninsula’s way of coming back – very slowly, but very surely.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg attended the event, but as CBS 2′s Amy Dardashtian reported, was met with a chorus of boos and jeers.

In New Jersey Saturday, revelers flocked to Hoboken, where a parade was not held, but Lepre-Con festivities were.

Lines stretched around the block outside of a number of popular Hoboken night-spots, early on Saturday morning, as party goers dressed in green hats and t-shirts prepared to take advantage of drink specials.

The annual parade down Fifth Avenue in Manhattan will be held on Saturday, March 16.

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