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The West Indian American Day Parade is underway on Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn as we speak. And while the festival is known for delicious food, great music and beautiful costumes, it’s important to point out that it’s a revenue generator as well.

A study conducted by the Empire State Development Corporation finds that the parade generates $86 million for every one million attendees. It’s estimated that three million people will attend the parade this year.

Money for the event comes from New York State grants, sponsors, fundraisers and other sources. This is the 45th anniversary of the event and even though the numbers are down a bit this year, it’s still a big opportunity for businesses. We just saw a bit of live coverage on CBS News with reporters asking food vendors about the biggest sellers (oxtails was one response). The parade is bringing as much cash as excitement.

Separately, this weekend was also the annual Tom Joyner Family Reunion in Kissimmee, FL to celebrate African-American culture. The decade-old event includes music, activities and families from all over the country who make the trip to the party. Vendors selling food, jewelry and gear supporting President Obama are also a big part of the festivities. For coverage, click here.

Everyone enjoy the parade and the rest of this great Labor Day weekend!

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