08/02/2014 11:18 EDT | Updated 10/02/2014 05:59 EDT

Caribbean carnival gets colourful with today's parade

Toronto's Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival's annual parade began Saturday, complete with colourful costumes, music and dancing. 

The event, commonly called Caribana, is in its  47th year. It bills itself an "explosion of Caribbean cuisine, music, revelry as well as visual and performing arts."

The parade is the marquee event of the three-week festival and winds along a 3.5-kilometre stretch of Toronto's Lakeshore Boulevard.

A spokesman says the festival has improved safety after the death of a Mississauga, Ont., teenager who was run over by a float at last year's parade.

Stephen Weir says the trucks are now equipped with protective skirts.

He says the parade celebrates the end of slavery in the Caribbean, and the simple joy of freely walking down the street.