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New Yorkers Celebrate Three Kings Day

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TWC News: New Yorkers Celebrate Three Kings Day
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Thousands lined the streets of East Harlem Monday for the annual Three Kings Day Parade.

The colorful march kicked off at 106th Street and Lexington Avenue featuring puppets, live camels and thousands of city schoolkids.

It celebrates the time Christians believe the three wise men, or kings, visited the baby Jesus.

"They took presents to Jesus because he was born," said one young parade goer.

Organizers say Three Kings Day is a major event in the Latino and Caribbean community.

"I think that in Latino communities especially wellness is sort of a topic that although it's really important it doesn't get talked about a lot. We felt it important to bring it up as an issue that we can highlight at the start of the New Year," said Eileen Reyes of El Museo del Barrio.

Grammy nominated percussionist Bobby Sanabria was one of the honorary Three Kings.

"Not only do we celebrate the birth of the baby Jesus, but in the Latino community it's a cultural celebration as well. So we embrace all New Yorkers, all Latinos, everyone," Sanabria said.

The other honorary kings were community activist Carmen Vazquez and Dr. Harold Fernandez, a heart surgeon who spoke about the importance of this year's theme, wellness.

"A lot of the conditions that I actually treat as a heart surgeon can be prevented by some of the things that we can do, like eating the right foods, and you know doing the right activities, exercising and so forth, so I'm here to represent that," Fernandez said.

Over the weekend, kids in the Bronx got a jump start on Three Kings Day, receiving toys and backpacks from community members and elected officials.

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