Every self-respecting St. Patrick's Day parade has to have a leprechaun popping wheelies on a mini-bike.
Originally uploaded by jimfrazier
My family is Irish-American (making me 75% Irish), so we do celebrate the holiday a few weeks from now on March 17th or thereabouts. We gather at my parents' house, have the annual viewing of The Quiet Man, then there's plenty of corned beef with mashed taters and white wine (sometimes there's Guinness, but that's not our drink of choice). Even so, Alexandria's celebratory parade typically passes unnoticed by me. Today for some reason, AJS mentioned St. Pat's Day on our drive in, so, when I arrived at work, I checked for details. Here they are:
"The City of Alexandria and Ballyshaners will host the 27th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade this Saturday, March 1, beginning at 12:30 p.m. in celebration of Irish-American heritage. The parade begins at King and West Streets and follows a route down King Street, past the reviewing stand at North Royal Street, and ends at the corner of King and Fairfax Streets. The parade is expected to conclude by 2:30 p.m. The Grand Marshal for the 2008 Parade will be His Excellency, Archbishop Edwin O'Brien, of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, MD."
For more specifics visit the Ballyshaners' site. There is also a car show and a dog show; my mom reminded me that Old Town is a doggy town, and there will likely be many leashed friends in attendance.
My favorite part of these parades, or the part that I pine most about missing, is watching the Irish dancing schools! There are some really good ones in the area. Rosie loves to see their dresses (I not-so-secretly plan to enroll her in an Irish dance school someday).
So, St. Patrick's Day parade. This Saturday. Anyone interested?