MIDTOWN, Manhattan (PIX11) — New York City and the nation will mark Veterans Day on Friday, pausing to reflect and honor those who protected the United States through their military service.

The focal point of the city’s celebration will be Fifth Avenue in Midtown, where the Veterans Day Parade will feature more than 20,000 marchers spanning over 280 units, along with 25 floats and more than 150 vehicles.

While every brand of military service is honored during the parade, this year, the United States Coast Guard will be the spotlighted branch. The grand marshal will be former Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Vince Patton, the eighth person overall and the first of African-American descent. Patton’s decorated military career included his being awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, the nation’s highest military peace time recognition for performance of duty.

The Veterans Day Parade will begin around noon, rain or shine, at Fifth Avenue and 26th Street. It will head north on Fifth, coming to a close at 45th Street.

Some COVID-19 modifications remain in effect, according to organizers, including a reduced group of participants in a wreath procession to the Eternal Light Flagstaff memorial in Madison Square Park. Otherwise, the parade will look like it has in the past, as the city celebrates and honors those who fought for our country and served in the military.