Columbus Day Parade Returns To West Haven
Written by Michael P. Walsh
WEST HAVEN, CT — For the first time since 2011, the Greater New Haven Columbus Day Parade sails into the shore of West Haven’s deep-rooted Italian-American community at 1 p.m. Oct. 8 with the largest procession of its kind in New England, featuring 80 marching units and 25 bands.
The city takes over the Columbus Day Committee of Greater New Haven’s rotating parade from last year’s host, Hamden, assuming site duties for the annual procession that celebrates the intrepid spirit of Christopher Columbus, the Italian navigator who discovered the New World 525 years ago and charted a course for millions of Italian sons and daughters who followed his crossing to America. (To sign up for West Haven breaking news alerts and more, click here.)
“The journey of Christopher Columbus is one of the great stories of daring and discovery, just as the journey of Italian immigrants is a story of discovery and bravery,” said Mayor Edward M. O’Brien, whose Italian roots run on his mother’s side of the family. “As we embark on our city’s third parade in Columbus’ name, let us commemorate his indomitable legacy and recognize the inspiring contributions of the Italian people to the heartbeat of our nation.”
More than 15 million Americans claim Italian heritage, including about 40 percent of West Haven’s residents, O’Brien estimated.