Parade kicks off Labor Day weekend on Southeast Side

Chicago’s Labor Day Parade has long Chicago tradition

SHARE Parade kicks off Labor Day weekend on Southeast Side
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Mayor Lori Lightfoot greets supporters Saturday ahead of the Southeast Side Labor Day parade. | Pat Nabong/For The Sun-Times

Chicagoans kicked off the Labor Day weekend with the annual Southeast Side parade, while elsewhere throughout the city outdoor cooks fired up the grills for one of the last times.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot, joined by SEIU Local 1 President Tom Balanoff, marched in the parade, often stepping off the route to speak with onlookers.

The parade was organized by the Chicago Federation of Labor, which has an ownership stake in Sun-Times Media, and Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza (10th) in an effort to celebrate union pride, solidarity, and community togetherness.

The first Labor Day parade in Chicago was held in 1959 when it was referred to as the East Side Labor Day Parade and became “the prideful icon of the neighborhood,” according to the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.

Elsewhere in the city Chicago police were elevating their crime fighting efforts with “upwards of 1,000 additional officers out there again in a lot of our challenging areas,” Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson announced Tuesday in a joint appearance with Lightfoot.

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