Kitchener-Waterloo

Kitchener-Waterloo's Oktoberfest parade brings out thousands

Thousands of people lined the street on Monday to watch the Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest parade — the largest Thanksgiving Day parade in Canada.

Crowds camped out to watch 51st Oktoberfest Thanksgiving Day parade Monday morning

Some marching in the parade and people in the crowds wore traditional Bavarian lederhosen and dirndls. (Julianne Hazlewood/CBC)

Thousands of people lined the street on Monday to watch the Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest parade — the largest Thanksgiving Day parade in Canada.

More than 120 groups — marchers, bands and floats — made their way from Weber and Frederick Streets in Kitchener to Weber Street and Bridgeport Road in Waterloo.

Most of the groups are from Ontario, although some have made their way from the U.S. and overseas, including the Haenyeo Women Divers of Jeju Island, South Korea.

The Vista Hills drumline from Vista Hills Public School in Waterloo performed in the parade for the first time.

The temperature along the five-kilometre route was about 6 C, so many people were bundled up, including Tim and Holly Stork and their dog Miso.

Michele van der Veen has been bringing her nine-year-old son Brice to the parade since he was baby.

"Coming to the parade means spending time together. It's a special tradition," said van der Veen.

Miok Shin came to the parade for the first time with her family.

Elizabeth Ingold (second from the left) used to march in the parade when she was a kid and now drives in from Toronto with her friends to watch.

The Oktoberfest Thanksgiving Day parade has been running for 51 years. Kitchener-Waterloo's Oktoberfest, a celebration of German culture, food and beer, wraps up on Saturday.

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