St. Patrick’s Day is often celebrated by wearing green or eating green-colored foods. In many areas of the country, particularly in larger cities, they also celebrate by having a St. Patrick’s Day parade. Perhaps you think it’s time your neighborhood had one. If you’re thinking of planning a neighborhood St. Patrick’s Day parade, learn how to organize it by following these tips.
Begin planning early in the year.
It’s going to take a while to organize a St. Patrick’s Day parade so you’ll want to start well before March. In fact, the earlier in the year you can begin planning, the better organized your parade will be.
Some neighborhoods have a community center where meetings can be held.
See if it’s available and then send out invitations to everyone. If you don’t have a community center, visit the neighbors and find out how many of them are willing to pitch in. Make a list of items which need to be done and have each family be responsible for one thing.
Decide what day and time the parade will be.
You’ll also want to have a parade route planned out well ahead of time. St. Patrick’s Day may officially be March 17 but that doesn’t mean you have to use that day for your parade. If March 17 falls during the week you may want to have the parade the weekend before so as many people as possible can participate.
Check to see if your city or town has particular rules about having parades.
It would be terrible to have the parade entirely planned only to find out there were regulations or costs related to having it. The City Clerk will usually know if there is a license or can at least direct you to the correct people to ensure your parade can go off without a hitch.
Have everyone in the neighborhood help advertise the parade.
Ask local churches, schools or businesses to post a flyer in the window or bulletin. While you’re there asking them to advertise the parade, don’t forget to ask them if they would like to participate. They may also be willing to sponsor the parade by helping to pay for it.
Strike up a relationship with the local media.
Contact television and radio stations as well as the area’s newspapers. They may be willing to run a story about the planning stages and then cover the actual parade. If you can establish a good working relationship with the media, half of your advertising is taken care of.
Contact local community and civic organizations to participate.
There may be a Shriner’s or Civitan group as well as Boy and Girl Scouts in the area. School bands, horseback riding clubs or veteran’s groups would also be good to have. Of course, you’ll want to have people of Irish descent involved. Many cities have Scottish or Irish groups so you’ll want to invite them to join your parade.
Give away green plastic jewelry or trinkets.
This may be one of the most expensive parts of the parade budget but it can make a big difference in how well the parade is enjoyed. People love free things, so you may want to find stores which will donate small items you can give away.
Planning a neighborhood St. Patrick’s Day Parade isn’t only for the neighborhood to watch; you want them to join in the fun. Encourage the families in the neighborhood to decorate their cars, bicycles or wagons and join the parade. Don’t forget to have everyone wear green as they walk the parade route!
Looking for some delicious corned beef to go along with your celebration? You have to try this Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage!
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