Celebrating the workforce: Hundreds take to the streets of downtown Milwaukee for Laborfest Parade

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Crowds took to the streets of downtown Milwaukee holding banners and flags in celebration of Labor Day Monday, September 1st.

"It`s just about how work is getting better and people are starting to get happy again because they`ve got jobs finally," said Wisconsin Laborer's District Council President John Schmitt.

The Laborfest Parade kicked off at Zeidler Union Square Park and the more than two-mile route ended at the Summerfest grounds.

More than 20 organizations were represented in the parade.

"To get together -- all of us brotherhood people and sisterhood. We have a lot of females in our trade also. It`s a great way of us showing our union support," said Plumbers Local 75 member Thomas Kolton.

Around 70 vehicles could be seen throughout the parade route and some of them were rather unique -- including Dell Battle's custom-made Obama motorcycle with the President's face and name lasered onto the bike.

"They just gave me a ticket to go see him speak at the end of the parade so hopefully I can get in there and hear him speak and maybe he`ll see the bike -- I don`t know," said Battle.

Parade participants said the parade is a way to remind people about the impact unions have made in history.

"Think about it: If you didn`t have us unions in the past, in the 40s and the 50s -- we wouldn`t have Saturdays and Sundays, plus a 40-hour week," said Kolton.

It was an opportunity to celebrate the past and present of the workforce supporting our country.

The Laborfest Parade went from 11:00 a.m. - noon and the festivities at the Summerfest grounds were going on from noon until 5:00 p.m.