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A Million People, A Million Smiles At The Chinese Lunar New Year Parade In SF

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) -- There was no shortage of crowds and no shortage of smiles and excitement for this year's Chinese New Year Parade in San Francisco.

More than a million people came out for what is billed as the largest parade of its kind outside of China.

Spectators lined the streets as a fanfare of floats, firecrackers, acrobats and marchers in elaborate costumes paraded down Market street, around Union Square, and then into Chinatown.

"It is awesome... it is the first time I have seen it," exclaimed one tourist. "I like it!"

This parade dates back to the 1800's but this modern version began in the 80s.

Supervisor David Campos said the view from the parade route is also pretty spectacular.

"You can see the amazing diversity of this city," he said. "Everyone is here to celebrate the Chinese New Year."

The Chinese year is 4713. It is the year of the Sheep. According to lore, babies born this year will be artistic, charming and sweet.

Gong Hay Fat Choy!

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