Queen El­iz­a­beth II and fam­ily mark 90th birth­day

Pakistan Observer - - 07 -

LON­DON—Queen El­iz­a­beth II and her fam­ily marked her of­fi­cial 90th birth­day Satur­day with a pa­rade, a col­or­ful mil­i­tary cer­e­mony and an ap­pear­ance on the Buck­ing­ham Palace bal­cony.

It was a day for con­ti­nu­ity. Princess Char­lotte, age 1, made her first ap­pear­ance on the bal­cony near the queen’s hus­band, Prince Philip, who turned 95 on Fri­day.

The queen, wear­ing a lime green out­fit vis­i­ble from the far points of the crowded mall in front of the palace, trav­eled by horse-drawn vin­tage car­riage, some­times wav­ing to the throng.

Prince Charles, heir to the throne, and his son Prince Wil­liam rode down the mall on horse­back along with Princess Anne, the queen’s daugh­ter.

The splen­did Troop­ing the Color pa­rade, which fea­tured more than 1,500 sol­diers and of­fi­cers, also in­cluded a fly-by of his­toric World War II air­craft and mod­ern fighter planes.

Large flag-wav­ing crowds flocked to the mall to mark the queen’s mile­stone and to en­joy the pro­ces­sion. The pa­rade route in the heart of cer­e­mo­nial Lon­don was lined with peo­ple as far as the eye could see.

The crowd cheered as the queen emerged on the bal­cony, scene of many na­tional cel­e­bra­tions in the past. Wil­liam and his wife Kate were joined by Char­lotte — in Kate’s arms — and tod­dler Prince Ge­orge, 2, who stood on his own.

The fes­tiv­i­ties con­tinue Sun­day with a mas­sive street party in front of the palace. The palace has in­vited roughly 10,000 peo­ple who work at char­i­ties sup­ported by the queen to the open air fes­tiv­i­ties. Street par­ties will also be held in many towns and cities through­out Bri­tain and in other Com­mon­wealth coun­tries.

The queen’s real birth­day is in April. The of­fi­cial birth­day is timed in hope of fair weather — a cus­tom that be­gan in the 18th cen­tury.—AP

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