The Queen appears on the balcony of the palace as the Platinum Jubilee Party begins in London

With a familiar swirl of military color, precision and horsemanship, Britain kicked 

off Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee celebrations with the Trooping the 

Colour parade that saw the 96-year-old monarch appear – twice – for the first time in years on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. 

Dressed in a pale blue coat dress and hat, holding a cane and wearing shaded 

glasses, the queen looked happy and well, and even chatted to one of her great-grandchildren as she stood on the balcony. 

She appeared first with one of her royal cousins, the Duke of Kent, to take the 

salute of her troops, and then with her extended family of "working royals" as 70 

RAF jets roared overhead in the traditional end of the Trooping parade.