Olympic boxer Grand Marshal of 26th Street Parade

Thousands of people lined up along the streets of Little Village for the Annual 26th Street Mexican Independence Day Parade on Sunday, Sept. 8.
The parade, starting on 26th Street and Albany Avenue, traveled west to Kostner Avenue where the 24th Annual Little Village Festival ran all weekend long. Nearly 100 local and national vendors participated in the patriotic festivities.

From elected officials Mayor Rahm Emanuel and State Representative Elizabeth “Lisa” Hernandez to local television personalities like Aureliano
“Auri” Salgado, the annual parade had a wide range of entertainment. WBC Lightweight World Champion and Olympic boxer David Diaz, a Chicago native, was this year’s Grand Marshal.

Music and cheers from the spectators could be heard from blocks away as floats from Los Mangos, City Colleges of Chicago and many more went by.

Cicero native Monse Granados shared her first Mexican Independence Day Parade experience with her family.

“My family is new to Chicago; this is our first time coming to the parade. My mom and I are Mexican and my dad and my sister are from Ecuador,” said Granados.

Mario Marca and his daughter Karen Marca, both of Ecuadorian descent, celebrated Mexican Independence for the first time this year. Neither knew what to expect of the parade.

“I celebrate Ecuadorian independence. This is my first time here at this parade. We’ll have to see if it’s worth the sunburn,” said Mario Marca.
The parade lasted over two hours. Led by Farragut Career Academy’s ROTC and band, a group of low riders closed the procession.
“We’ll definitely be back next year. I really enjoyed everything,” said Karen Marca.

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