They took to the streets with pride.
Locals marched along 18th Avenue in Bensonhurst on Oct. 6 for the Federation of Italian-American Organizations’ 37th annual Columbus Parade. The mother of one youngster who walked in the parade with his school said her son enjoyed taking in the sights along the 1.5-mile route stretching from 61st Street to Benson Avenue.
“It was a good experience for him to be a part of the parade,” said Lorena Wasser of her 8-year-old son, Bryan.
The festivities started with a mass at St. Athanasius Roman Catholic Church on Bay Parkway and 61st Street, then the parade kicked off a few hours later with three grand marshals leading the way: former commissioner of the Fire Department and city’s Office of Emergency Management Joseph Bruno, PS 748 principal Ursula Annio, and the police department’s Det. Stephen Agosta.
The grand marshals led students from Fort Hamilton High School’s marching band, who created the soundtrack to the streets with their drums and instruments, along with cheerleaders from local schools, who dazzled onlookers by dancing to the beat. And automobile aficionados also got to enjoy the fleet of antique cars that rolled down the street.