WATCH: Timelapse of Chicago River Turning Green for St. Patrick's Day | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

WATCH: Timelapse of Chicago River Turning Green for St. Patrick's Day

The river's vibrant color is brief: It typically lasts about five hours before fading away

Watch a timelapse video of the Chicago River being dyed green to celebrate St. Patrick's day. (Published Thursday, March 17, 2016)

For more than 40 years, the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers have dyed the Chicago River green to kick off the city's St. Patrick’s Day Parade celebration.

The union began dumping dye into the river at 9 a.m. Saturday.

The environmentally friendly dye, an orange powder, turns the water bright green, and the formula is a secret, according to the Chicago Tribune. Forty pounds of powder were used this year.

St. Patrick's Day Through the YearsSt. Patrick's Day Through the Years

The river's vibrant color is brief: It typically lasts about five hours before darkening and fading away.

YouTube user PrimoMedia shared a timelapse video of the tradition as seen from the Sheraton Grand Chicago.

Other social media users, including Lou Hayes Jr., shared footage of their own.

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