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MAIN Arrow to Home LifeHome Life Arrow to Home Life - HolidaysHolidays Arrow to Home Life - Holidays - Columbus DayColumbus Day

In fourteen hundred ninety-two
Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

Columbus Day parade in New York City's 5th Avenue
New York's Fifth Avenue, the site of
America's largest Columbus Day parade.

As every school child knows, Christopher Columbus was the Italian navigator who sailed with Spanish ships to a land inhabited by native Americans only to mistakenly call them Indians because he thought that he had landed in India!

Despite the confusion, the discovery changed the course of history.

Today, among many celebrations that still mark the discovery of America, the biggest ones for consumers are the annual Columbus Day sales by major retailers coast to coast offering early fall bargains on furniture and winter apparel.

And, of course, there are the parades! The one in NYC is by far the largest, grandest and most popular, welcoming over 1 million spectators annually.

This year, the annual Columbus Day Parade in NYC takes place on Monday, October 9, 2017 beginning at 11:45 AM — as huge lunchtime crowds come out to cheer along the parade route up Fifth Avenue from 44th Street north to 79th Street.

Meanwhile, another big celebration happens on the West Coast as Columbus Day is observed during San Francisco Fleet Week -- when the city's Italian American population joins in to salute the US Navy -- while commemorating the famous Italian who brought his three famous ships to America in 1492.

What's closed on Columbus Day?

Despite it being a normal workday for many Americans, Columbus Day is an official federal government holiday with the post office and banks closing in honor of the day (although Wall St. stock markets still stay open as usual.)

Around the Web, join in the fun as we celebrate both traditional and new ways to celebrate Columbus Day with more stories and history lessons, arts and crafts ideas, clip art and interactive exhibits just up ahead...

also see -> Native American Art | Native American Month

More about Columbus Day around the Web:

Columbus Day
- From the Holiday Zone, with fun arts and crafts ideas, songs and poems, with links to sites that celebrate Columbus Day with clip art and other crafts. Sites that celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day are given equal time, as well.

Christopher Columbus Discovers America, 1492 - Check out this "you are there" account from Eyewitness History.

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