Inclusiveness celebrated at Queens’ St. Pat’s for All parade

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Many elected officials and city leaders marched in the Queens St. Patricks Day Parade this afternoon. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

There were two early St. Patrick’s Day parades in New York City on Sunday, but they were two different flavors.

The Staten Island parade excluded gay and lesbian floats and banners, while the Queens parade touted “inclusiveness.” Many city leaders attended the parade in Woodside, Queens, entitled “St. Pat’s for All,” including  Mayor Bill de Blasio, Senator Charles Schumer, Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Carolyn Maloney and many of the elected officials on the city, state and federal levels.

County Cork Pipes and Drums show their Irish spirit. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

“Woodside is a special jewel in that history of the parade in no small part because of this beautiful progressive Irish community in Woodside,” said Ocasio-Cortez said. “The heart and spirit of today is about inclusiveness, celebration and uplifting, and we are celebrating each other.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez greets a young boy at the parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
A young girl has those shining Irish eyes. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

“This is one of my favorite parades, because everyone is included, nobody is excluded,” Maloney added.

Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who is openly gay, recalled being fearful to tell his grandfather he had come out.

“He had photo of JFK, the Pope, and Jesus on the wall and I saw down and he said, ‘what’s the matter, you are making me nervous,'” Johnson recalled. “He told me to spit it out. So I said wanted to tell you that I’m gay. He said ‘Jesus Mary and Joseph, I thought you were going to tell me you were a Republican.'”

Speaker Corey Johnson spoke of facing his own fears in coming out. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

Mayor Bill de Blasio praised the organizers of the parade and said being “inclusive” was the way New Yorkers need to be.

“Twenty-one years ago, a different Irish rebellion broke out, the thought of respecting everybody – its something that we are feeling today, if not for what happened 21 years ago, there would still be a lot of people who are not getting the respect they deserve,” said de Blasio of the founding of the St. Pat’s For All Parade. “Thank you to all those who helped build this from scratch when so many people said you couldn’t do it.”

Mayor de Blasio walks through as a man waves a huge Irish flag. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Catherine King comes prepared for the parade.. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Abe Lincoln makes an appearance, taking photos of children watching parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Despite the cold, Woodside came out strong for the parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Oreo comes out dressed for the occasion. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Numerous bands took part in the parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
New Yorker’s of all colors and outfits came out for the parade.(Photo by Todd Maisel)
There were lots of oddities at the parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Young girl shows her Irish spirit. (Photo by Todd Maisel)
Dancers make way on parade. (Photo by Todd Maisel)