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Have You Seen This? Time-lapse video shows Chicago River dyed green

The local plumbers union uses boats to dye the Chicago River green on Saturday, in honor of St. Patrick's Day. This time-lapse video shows it happening. (Fox 32 Chicago, YouTube)

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LEPRECHAUN LANE — Everywhere you turn today, you're bound to see green!

The Windy City kicked off St. Patrick's Day celebrations earlier this week by turning the Chicago River green. Small boats cut across the river last Saturday, spraying dye that transformed the water to its vibrant emerald color. Watch this time-lapse video to see it happen.

According to NBC 5 Chicago, we have the Chicago Plumbers union to thank for this annual display.

The tradition began back in 1962 when plumbers noticed green on a worker's white coveralls and figured out it came from dye used to find leaks in the river. They decided to dye the whole river green with a specific color that the union claims is just like the greens found over in Ireland.

When the dye is first sprayed it looks orange, NBC reports, but once it's settled into the water it magically turns green (through the Luck of the Irish, no doubt).

By the way, the union says the dye is environmentally friendly. The exact recipe for it remains a secret, NBC says.

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Linda Williams is's early morning web producer. She joined after many years at KSL TV. Linda graduated with a communications degree from Brigham Young University and now calls Idaho home.


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