THE BRONX - Thousands of people celebrated at the annual Puerto Rican Festival on 152nd Street today, one of the events leading up to the Puerto Rican Day Parade on June 9.

The festival is used as a precursor to the parade and it aims to stimulate the public's interest in the parade taking place next week.

Up and down the street, people were reveling in music, dancing and eating traditional foods, all while Puerto Rican flags were draped practically everywhere.

The festival is sponsored by health insurance organization Healthfirst, as the theme of this year's Puerto Rican Day Parade is health.