JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - New Year's eve festivities in Jacksonville begin Monday afternoon when downtown streets will fill with marching bands, floats and dozens of groups participating in the Gator Bowl Parade.
The parade -- one day in advance of the 68th annual TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl -- features the marching bands from the competing teams: the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Northwestern Wildcats.
For the first time, The Local Station will broadcast the parade live and stream the event on News4Jax.com.
The parade, sponsored by Republic Services, will step off at 3 p.m. Monday on East Bay Street and proceed west and south south through downtown, past the Jacksonville Landing and the Times-Union Center.
In addition to the bands from both universities, numerous high school bands from Jacksonville and around the country will perform. There will also be 10 colorful floats and entries from 65 different groups and organizations.
Among the groups participating are the Daytona Harley Davidson Drill Team, nine titleholders in the Miss and Teen Jacksonville USA Pageant and members of the Jacksonville Corvette Club.
Some furry friends may also catch your eye on the Canine Companions for Independence float. The group trains dogs to help enhance the lives for those who are disabled.
Among the local groups marking in the parade are the Providence School band and a marching routine performed by the Julington Jesus Cadets, Troop 100. Other bands will travel hundreds of miles to perform in Jacksonville, including those from Missouri, Pennsylvania, Nebraska, Maryland and South Dakota.
The Jacksonville Rollergirls, Fernandina Pirates, Star Wars villains and Gator Clowns of Jacksonville and the greatest clown all, Ronald McDonald, will also be in the parade.
If you can't make it downtown Monday afternoon, Channel 4's Kent Justice and Adrienne Moore will host live coverage on The Local Station, Channel 4, and streaming on News4Jax.com. Ninety minutes of coverage begins at 3 p.m.
Copyright 2012 by News4Jax.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.