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Jefferson Parish St. Patrick's Day Parade on March 11, 2012

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the Jefferson Parish St. Patrick’s Day Parade. This organization started parading back in 1971 and has continued to be a tradition for the community. Each year there is an Irish Grand Marshal assigned to lead the parade of over 80 floats that feature adult and child riders. The floats are abundant and include both floats and truck floats that hand out Mardi Gras throws such as trinkets, carnival beads, flowers and cups, as well as cabbages and mixed vegetables.

The Jefferson Parish St. Patrick’s Day Parade is being held on Sunday, March 11, 2012 at noon. The parade route is approximately 3.63 miles and starts at Rummel High School, down Severn Avenue, along Metairie Road and ending on Focis and Canal. Admission is free, but that doesn’t mean finding a spot will be easy. Be sure to come ahead of time so you can get a front row seat and see the amazing floats up close and collect your Mardi Gras throws.

Being a rural community in Louisiana, Jefferson Parish takes their celebrations seriously and tends to honor the original roots of the holiday. The history of the St. Patrick’s Day parade started in the streets of colonial America, with celebrations starting as early as 1737 where colonists would hold a parade to honor their Irish heritage. Many of the St. Patrick’s Day traditions as we know them today didn’t start until the 19th century, but the idea of hosting an Irish parade has been celebrated for centuries, according to popular legends.

What makes the Jefferson Parish St. Patrick’s Day Parade so exciting is that this Louisiana event combines both St. Patrick’s Day and Mardi Gras. There’s no time more exciting in Louisiana than Mardi Gras, and with this special feast coming up about six weeks later, the St. Patrick’s Day parade gets everyone started off right. Mardi Gras throws are handed out in place of traditional candy that other parades have. You can expect colorful beads, feathers, coins and masks as some of the popular throws. What makes the Jefferson Parish St. Patrick’s Day Parade even more exciting is that it takes place in the infamous Jefferson Parish, also known as the “Sportsman’s Paradise”.  After spending the early afternoon at the parade, you can get some fishing in off one of the local marinas or practice your bird watching hobby. And just 15 minutes from New Orleans, you can hit the city in the evening for green beer and St. Patrick’s Day fun.

For more information, visit www.jeffparish.net.

Image Source: en.wikipedia.org

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